Twelve soldiers were yesterday sentenced to death by a military court sitting in Abuja.
The court found 13 out of the 18 soldiers standing trial for mutiny and other offences guilty. Five were discharged and acquitted, one to serve 28 days in jail with hard labour.
It would be recalled that the soldiers on 14 May, this year, opened fired at the General Officer Commanding, 7 Division of Nigerian Army, Maj. Gen. Ahmed Mohammmed, in Maiduguri. Their action was viewed in the military as mutiny.
Those discharged are David Robert, Mohammed Sani, Iseh Ubong, Sebastine Gwaba and Naaman Samuel. Jeremiah Echocho was sentenced to 28 days with hard labour. Those to face the firing squad inlude Jasper Braidolor, David Musa, Friday Onuh, Yusuf Shuaibu, Igonmu Emmanuel, Andrew Ugbede, Nurudeen Ahmed, Ifeanyi Alukagba, Alao Samuel, Amadi Chukwuma, Alan Linus, and Stephen Clement.
The twelve soldiers were found guilty of criminal conspiracy, mutiny, attempt to commit murder, insubordination and false accusation.
In delivering his verdict, the President of the Court Martial, Maj. Gen. C.C. Okonkwo, said the 12 soldiers were found guilty of three of the most heinous charges bars. Prior to the attack, it was reported that that soldiers at the Maimalari Cantonment had been complaining of insufficient ammunition, food and allowances.
It was alleged that the soldiers were unhappy and their morale was at its lowest ebb because there had not been troop rotation for a long time since their deployment to combat Boko Haram terrorists in the North- East.