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Stats: 17,979 Members, 73,279 Topics, 15,953 Comments. Date: Sep 19 2019, 10:02 pm

Terrorism Studies: Nigerian Army Officer Emerges Best In Uk Varsity

Nigeria Student Forum / Educational News / Terrorism Studies: Nigerian Army Officer Emerges Best In Uk Varsity

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Habeeblah Olamilekan
Kwara state polytechnic,ilorin
Graduate, Nigeria.
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Amid the perpetual clamour by the global
human rights organisation, against the efforts
of the Nigerian military in combating
insurgency and the accusations that the
Armed Forces are doing little or nothing to
protect the rights of citizens, a Nigerian Army
lawyer, Major Ajibade Azeez Atobatele, of the
Directorate of Army Legal Services, studying in
the United Kingdom, has made the country

He distinguished himself by finishing with a
distinction in International Human Rights and
Terrorism Law, coming top in his class.

The Nigerian Army officer also bagged the
Best Dissertation Award of the Faculty of Arts
and Social Sciences, University of Lancaster,
one of the top 10 universities in the United
Kingdom. He was honoured at the convocation
ceremony of the University, which was held in
the UK. Attesting further to Atobatele’s
brilliant academic performance, the Director of
Postgraduate Programmes in the Lancaster
University Law School, Prof. Sigrun Skogly,
confirmed, in a letter written to the Nigerian
Embassy in London, that the Army officer
performed exceptionally well and achieved the
highest mark of his cohort – a mark she
described as rarely awarded by the university.

The Law School further confirmed that
Atobatele had been offered a doctoral degree
admission in order to further his research on
legal issues surrounding the war against
insurgency in Nigeria.

This remarkable feat by the Nigerian Army
officer is coming on the heels of the scathing
criticisms by Amnesty International, which has
always been at loggerheads with the Nigerian
government over alleged poor human rights
records of the country, especially with regard
to the perennial fight against Boko Haram
insurgents in the North Eastern part of the

Indeed, this development has been described
as a confirmation of the efforts of the present
administration of President Muhammadu
Buhari and those of the Chief of Army Staff,
Lt. General Tukur Buratai, who believes that
the war against Boko Haram is not only to be
fought in the battle trenches, but also on the
intellectual sphere. Not only that, this
development has also substantiated the recent
claims by the Defence Headquarters that
serious steps were being taken by the military
and other security agencies to ensure that in
any operation, human rights issues must be
held sacrosanct and that in all her institutions
in the country, from the lowest to the highest,
the importance and essence of human rights
laws during armed conflicts are taught.
The need to combat the seeming international
antagonism championed by the AI against the
Nigerian government and the Army compelled
the top brass of the Nigerian Army, led by the
Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai,
to restrategise and take certain concrete steps
to reposition the Army in its fight against
terrorism and insurgency with a view to
improving the human rights record of the
force. The Federal Government recognised
that a way to achieve this was through the
provision of higher education opportunities in
human rights for Army officers.

Therefore, in line with his vision “to have a
professionally responsive Nigerian Army in the
discharge of its constitutional roles,” as well
as prove Amnesty International, which is
always accusing the military of gross human
rights violation, wrong, Buratai deemed it fit to
allow officers to undertake special courses
focusing on human rights protection in the
fight against terrorism and insurgency.

The Nigerian military and the country are now
set to reap the fruits of this ingenuity and
investment by the chief of Army staff.
Buoyed by Atobatele’s brilliant and excellent
performance in its LLM course in International
Human Rights and Terrorism Law, the
university has also immediately offered him a
place in its Doctor of Philosophy programme
for the 2019 academic session.

Documented testimonials obtained by our
correspondent from the UK-based university
attest to Ajibade’s “exceptional brilliance”
throughout his course of study at the
Lancaster University Law School.

The General Secretary of the Committee for
the Defence of Human Rights, Comrade
Olayinka Folarin, expressed confidence that
allowing military officers to go for such
courses in human rights and returning to apply
the knowledge acquired, regarding the
observance of the rules of engagement, would
ultimately help to regulate the conduct of
troops during operations.
Folarin added that the efforts by the Army to
improve respect for human rights of persons
during their operations would also result in
raising the rating of the country’s human
rights record in the global arena.

The CDHR general secretary said: “I believe it
will regulate their conduct as far as human
rights is concerned in the fight against
terrorism. It is a welcome development. It will
enhance their performance; it will enhance
their conduct. We just believe that by having
their men studying such courses and coming
back to apply it, it would go a long way in
building confidence in the Nigerian military
because everyone should be accorded his or
her human rights. We must know that human
right is the cornerstone of any professional

“We just hope that the Nigerian military will
see reason why they should be humane in their
conduct and also take time to listen
accordingly to the voice of the people. And
the mentality that they are trained to kill can
easily be addressed when the respect for
human rights is there. When they are
acquainted with what human rights entail and
when they also understand that Nigeria is also
party to several international treaties on
human and people’s rights; it will assist them
in their performance, in their operations. It will
make them to be more professional and it will
put our country in tune with the rest of the

Speaking in the same vein, a defence analyst
and strategist, Mr. Adesola Olatunji, said
allowing military officers to undergo such
courses would go a long way in checking the
alleged violation of human rights of citizens by
military personnel involved in combating
terrorism and insurgency across the country.

The military expert added that the
development would also improve the poor
rating of the human rights record of both the
military and the Nigerian nation by
international human rights

“This development has brought to the fore, the
commitment of the present administration of
President Muhammadu Buhari and the vision
of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur
Buratai, in having a professionally responsive
Army discharging its constitutional role in
strict compliance with the various international
conventions on human rights, especially in its
war against terrorism,” he said.

Military authorities decline to comment
However, efforts by our correspondent to
reach the Chief of Training and Operations,
Nigerian Army, Major Gen. L.O. Adeosun, for
an update on the outstanding performance of
the brilliant officer proved abortive.

Adeosun did not take calls made to his phone
and also did not reply text messages sent to
him as at the time of filing this report.

source:- www.vanguardngr.com/2019/06/terrorism-studies-nigerian-army-officer-emerges-best-in-uk-varsity/
Terrorism Studies: Nigerian Army Officer Emerges Best In Uk Varsity - Educational News

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