By Mary BASSEY Senior Investigator Correspondent Lagos/
LAGOS– APPARENTLY discomfited by complaints of land dispute between civilians and officers of the Nigerian Army both serving and retired, the General Officer Commanding GOC 81 Division, Major General Lawrence Fejokwu has set up a standing committee that shall interface with disputed parties anytime such arises. This hint was dropped by Major Olaniyi Osoba, Ag Director, Army Public Relations, 81 Division in a press release made available to CrimeWorld magazine online. According to the statement, members of the standing committee include Commander 81 Div Garrison Brig Gen NMS Najidada as chairman, Commander 81 Div provost Col AC Chukwuma, Major AA Jimoh, Capt N Maigari and Lt YO Mathew as members. The committee Major Osoba noted would not only interface between the disputed parties and profer amicable resolution when the need arises, but shall also help manage negative publicity as it affects officers and personnel of the Nigerian Army NA especially, those of the 81 Division. The statement reads in full: “The General Officer Commanding (GOC) 81 Division Nigerian Army Major General Lawrence Fejokwu has inaugurated a Standing Committee to handle land dispute complaints by Personnel of the Division in view of the several complaints on land disputes involving serving and retired officers and soldiers within the Division area of responsibility. The GOC during the Inauguration noted that the inauguration of the standing Committee was as a result of reports of disputes occasioned by unpleasant and often violent confrontations between soldiers serving within the Division and civilian leading to several allegations against the personnel of the Division and in some cases, the Nigerian Army. He said some of such cases have been taken to the media space with false allegations of intimidation as well as human rights violation thereby promoting a negative public perception about the NA. Major General Lawrence Fejokwu disclosed that it is in the light of the several land related litigations against personnel of the Division that he convened a standing land Committee to investigate ascertain facts and intervene when necessary in genuine cases involving serving and retired Nigerian Army Personnel. He furthermore said the Committee would help reduce the negative pubkicity that often emanate from the independent resolution of such land matters by NA Personnel. The standing Committee include commander 81 Div Garrison Brig Gen NMS Najidada who is the chairman. Other members are commander 81 Div provost Col AC Chukwuma, Major AA Jimoh, Capt N Maigari and Lt YO Mathew. The Committee is to establish a mechanism for the amicable resolution of reported land disputes”
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