Nigerian military: We will not overthrow Buhari
Nigeria’s military has cautioned local leaders against inciting violence and vowed not to overthrow President Muhammadu Buhari, whose government has been criticized for the country’s rising insecurity.
Buhari’s armed forces tend to be struggling to contain insecurity, which ranges from an insurgency uprising in the northeast to herder-farmer clashes in the center, banditry in the northwest, and separatist tensions in the southeast.
While some secessionists and opposition leaders have attempted to destabilize the government, the country’s military has pledged its support for Mr Buhari, a former army general. If a coup occurs, it would effectively end civilian rule, which was restored in 1999 following a period of military rule.
The military stated in a statement released by Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, Acting Director Defence Information, that it has no intention of retaking power in Nigeria. This is because, despite the difficulties, it insists that democracy is the way to go and that militarism is no longer trendy.
According to Nation Africa, the army also warned politicians nursing ambitions of ruling Nigeria outside the ballot box, saying it would continue to defend the country’s democracy.
“We shall continue to remain apolitical, subordinate to the Civil Authority, firmly loyal to the President, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari and the 1999 Constitution as Amended…We shall continue to discharge our constitutional responsibilities professionally, especially in protecting the country’s democracy, defence of the territorial integrity of the country as well as protection of lives and properties of citizens,” the statement said in part.
“We also wish to remind all military personnel that it is treasonable to even contemplate this illegality. The full wrath of the law will be brought to bear on any personnel found to collude with people having such agenda.”
Mr Robert Clarke, a senior advocate in the nation, proposed that the new political leadership hand over power to the military for restructuring purposes, which Brigadier General Nwachukwu dismissed. Mr Clarke had previously stated that the nation was on the verge of collapse and proposed that the political leadership hand power to the military in order to restructure the security forces.
“The situation in this country today is so bad that I, Robert Clarke, I cannot guarantee Nigeria staying another six months. The problems are so overwhelming and they have been created by these same politicians since the 1999 constitution came into being,” he said in a TV interview on May 2, 2021.
“Anybody who feels I’m wrong, let him tell me. Nigeria has to be changed; Nigeria has to be changed from what it is today and the only way to change it is to create a state that would make the 1999 constitution ungovernable for its existence.”
The airing of the programme by Channel Television stations caused an uproar in Nigeria. However, Buhari has been advised to seek outside support or resign by opposition leaders such as Bukola Saraki and Nobel Laureate and playwright Wole Soyinka.