The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has broken its silence on the rumours of a coup plot dominating the polity in the past two weeks.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, had recently cautioned military officers against hobnobbing with politicians and warned that anyone caught involving in partisan politics would be severely dealt with.
Since then, the political turf has been awash with debates and cautioning against military intervention in the country’s governance.
At a press conference on Wednesday, Defence spokesman, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, asked Nigerians not to lose sleep on the issue because the military remains loyal to the constitution and would continue to subordinate itself to civil authority.
Enenche said that Gen. Buratai’s warning was a routine caution handed down by commanders at intervals to remind officers and men of their professional obligation to the country, and should not be misconstrued to mean a coup scare.
He said: “Professionally, it is a command responsibility to caution officers and men on routine basis to conform to the ethics of the military in all ramifications, which includes interactions and exchange of visits among others.
“This is to prevent members of the armed forces from derailing from their core focus of total dedication to their oath of allegiance.
“Consequently, all fears about a coup should be allayed as the contemporary Nigerian military is abreast with the best international practice in governance, which is democracy.
“The armed forces will remain totally loyal to the Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and in complete subordination to civil rule,” he said.
In a statement two weeks ago, the Director, Army Public Relations, Brig.-Gen. Sani Usman, said that “some individuals are approaching officers, soldiers for some undisclosed reasons.
Reacting to the comments, Rivers State Governor, Nyesome Wike, urged the Army to stop posting soldiers to politicians.
Wike asked: “Who are those approving battalions of soldiers for politicians? If they don’t want soldiers to follow politicians, they should stop giving soldiers to politicians.”
The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, warned on Monday that the people of Lagos like other Nigerians would not support any military coup.
On the alleged posting of soldiers to politicians, Gen. Enenche explained that only C-in-C and the Minister of Defence are entitled to military Aide-De-Camp in accordance with global practices.
On Tuesday, presidential spokesman, Mr. Femi Adesina, at a media parley to mark two years of APC administration, urged Nigerians to ignore the coup rumours, saying “it should not be stretched beyond what the military authorities had said.”