The former Theatre Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, Major General Olusegun Adeniyi, has finally been convicted by a military court after a video where he complained about insufficient military resources to fight insurgency was leaked.
According to The Nigerian Tribune, the military court, on Monday, November 30, 2020, found Gen Adeniyi guilty of violating military social media guidelines and ordered his demotion by at least three years.
The court, in a similar development, also sentenced Gen Adeniyi’s aide, Private Tokunbo Obanla, who was prosecuted alongside the general, to 28 days in prison with hard labour.
According to reports, the conviction of Gen. Adeniyi and Mr Obanla is still subject to confirmation by the military authorities.
Gen Adeniyi was said to have pleaded guilty to three-count of unlawful use of social media, and damage to service property amongst other issues.
The verdict by the court-martial comes eight months after a video of Adeniyi complaining about a lack of military equipment to combat Boko Haram insurgents in the North-East went viral. The general complained that insurgents were outnumbering the troops. He added that intelligence failure was responsible for an attack by insurgents that claimed dozens of soldiers.
The viral video triggered controversies and the Nigeria Army swiftly moved to suspend Gen. Adeniyi and pulled him out of the war front. Subsequently, charges of military social media guideline violations were filed against him.
Gen. Adeniyi maintained that he did nothing wrong because he did not release the video. He noted that his phone was in Obanla’s custody when the incident happened.
Obanla was handed the 28-day sentence after he allegedly admitted to posting the video on social media by mistake.
Meanwhile, Gen. Adeniyi’s lawyers have vowed to appeal the judgment.