Gutter Journalism: Sahara Reporters to pay N10bn for lying against Buratai

By Halima Abdulkadiri

Sahara Reporters is set to pay N10bn for lying against Former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai (retired) who has filed a suit against the online newspaper over a report linking him to a N1.85 billion recovered loot.

In the suit with number FCT/HC/CV/252/2022 filed by his lawyer, Dr Reuben Atabo (SAN), Buratai asked the FCT High Court to declare the Sahara Reporters’ publication captioned, “Exclusive: Anti-graft agency, ICPC uncovers billions in cash meant for arms, ammunition to fight Boko Haram in Abuja home of ex-Chief of Army Staff, Buratai” of June 23, 2022 as pure defamation of character. The ex-COAS wants the court to award him the sum of N10 billion in general and aggravated damages over the use of libellous words in the publication of the online platform.

He further demanded an order of the court compelling the newspaper to publish a retraction and an apology in two national dailies and its online platform “where the defamatory publication was made.”

Buratai, who was appointed Nigeria’s ambassador to the Benin Republic after he retired from the army, averred that the publication damaged his reputation after he diligently served Nigeria in various capacities and was awarded various meritorious honours for his distinguished service. No date has been fixed for the hearing.

Buratai Bags Yoruba Chieftaincy Title

Olowu of Kuta, HRM Oba Adekunle Makama Oyelude, Tegbosun iii, has conferred the chieftaincy title of ‘Are Balogun Agba’ of Owu-Kuta Kingdom on former chief of army staff and Nigerian Ambassador to the Benin Republic, Lt Gen TY Buratai rtd.

According to the letter of conferment sighted by our Correspondent, Olowu said; “Besides my long-standing excellent inter-personal relationship with you, your qualification as an icon worthy of being bestowed with High Chieftaincy titles of Owu-Kuta is superlative.

Olowu explains that since he assumed the throne of his forefathers on the 15th of September 2012, he has developed three main concerns as primary objectives in Office, which include peaceful coexistence, socio-economic development and qualitative leadership.

He said: “Conferment of this title on you by the Owu Kingdom is further testimony to the fact that people appreciate what you have done and the ones you are still doing for the country. This long-earned title should further reinvigorate you to do more for posterity.

“After due consultation with the Olowu-in-Council and the entire Royal Family, I hereby confer on you the High Chieftaincy title of:‘Are Balogun Agba’ of ‘Owu-Kuta’ Kingdom.
Please accept our congratulation with the highest royal esteem! The installation will take place at a later date.”

Women Group Honours Buratai, Bestows “Icon Of Hope” Award

From Zainab Haliru

Ideal Women Support and Empowerment Foundation has presented an award to former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), His Excellency Ambassador Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai Rtd.

The award was presented on Saturday in Kaduna, in a private ceremony, attended by several dignitaries.

President of the group, Falmata Abacha while presenting the award, said that Buratai has been supporting the group to help and empower the less privileged even when when he was in service.

She said with the award, the group wants to appreciate him for the kind gesture, “the selfless efforts of valiant men towards the development and advancement in the country.

Dr. Manzo Ahmed in his response, described the recipient as his childhood friend.

” I named my son after Buratai and also he named his daughter after my late mother.

“On behalf of his friends that are here, we appreciate your honour. We appreciate you all that have honoured him for finding him worthy We have lost count of how many honours he has received, this is due to his commitment, dedication and service to the nation.

“Buratai has never forgotten his friends throughout his life.

“Buratai is retired, but not tired. I am wondering if he is not much busier than he was in service,” he said.

Amongst notable dignitaries that accompanied Buratai to receive the awards, were, Lt. Gen. L. O. Adeosun (Rtd), Dr. Manzo Ahmed, Alhaji Alhassan Sultan, Maj. Gen. A. Tarfa (Rtd), Maj. Gen. Bulama Biu (Rtd), Alhaji Usman Nan-Nam,
Hon. Jafaru Ribadu and a host of others.

Olubadan: Your Appointment Well-Deserved, Buratai Tells Lekan Balogun

Nigerian Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Republic of Benin Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai (RTD), has said the appointment of Oba Dr Lekan Balogun Aliiwo Okunmade II as the 42nd Olubadan of Ibadan land is well deserved.

The former Chief of Army Staff said this in a congratulatory message to the Olubadan-designate who will be installed as the new Olubadan, Friday next week.

Buratai also prayed for wisdom and good health for the new traditional ruler of the Oyo State capital in order to justify the trust and confidence reposed in him by the government and people of the state.

General Buratai, in the congratulatory message which he personally signed and dated 5 March, 2022, said the appointment of the new was in recognition of his long years of service to the people of Ibadanland, the country and the global community.

“Your Royal Majesty, it is my pleasure to, on behalf of my family and the Nigerian Mission in Cotonou, Benin Republic, heartily congratulate you on your well-deserved appointment as the new Olubadan of Ibadan Land, by the Executive Governor of Oyo State, His Excellency Engr Oluseyi Abiodun Makinde.

“Your appointment to this exalted throne is indeed well deserved and a resounding acknowledgement of your many years of meritorious service to the good people of Ibadan Emirate and our dear nation as well as the global community at large.

“As you ascend the throne and assume office, our fervent prayer is for the Almighty Allah to grant you added wisdom and good health to justify the trust and confidence reposed in you by the government and good people of Oyo State.

“While wishing you a successful reign, please be reassured of our personal support and prayers at all times.

“Once again, congratulations Your Majesty and please accept the assurances of my esteemed regards and best wishes to you and your dear family,” the congratulatory message read.

Passionate Message To Nigerian Youth



Let me begin by stating unequivocally that I have spent my entire service life defending my nation and democracy because I am convinced that it is the political system most conducive to peace, sustainable development, the rule of law, and respect for human rights, which are the three pillars of any healthy and democratic nation. 

Permit me to utilize this opportunity to congratulate Nigeria and all Nigerians, particularly the youth, on 22 years of uninterrupted democratic administration. Some may argue that Nigeria’s young democracy is nothing to celebrate because its elections, which are designed to serve as means for the peaceful resolution of political rivalries, are frequently flashpoints for political bloodshed. I concur that elections devoid of integrity cannot bring legitimacy to the winners, security to the losers, or public confidence in their leaders and institutions. 

This weakens polities by encouraging disaffected groups to seek out less constructive outlets for their discontent. Because of this challenge associated with all nascent democracies, some people feel that there is no need to commend the Nigerian democratic project. I respectfully disagree. 

We are evolving, and as you can see, the system is improving daily as a result of our leaders’ periodic enhancements to the democratic system. For instance, the 2022 Electoral Act which the President,  Commander-in-Chief, President Muhammadu Buhari just signed into law, is a factor that will  undoubtedly improve the transparency and acceptability of the country’s future elections and promote democratic governance.

Democracy remains a universal aspiration because it actually delivers. For example, of the twenty countries with highest levels of human development as measured by the UN’s human development index, nineteen are liberal democracies.

 Among the top forty, thirty-six are liberal democracies. And even the citizens of poorer democracies live, on average, nine years longer than citizens of poor autocracies, because they have better access to health and education. Democracies are also less vulnerable to famines and conflicts.

It was the Greek philosopher, Aristotle, who said, “Man is, by nature, a political animal.” It means that a man is born, lives, and dies as a member of a community, and the affairs of that community are therefore his and vice-versa. 

This is why since my transition back to civilian life from the Army, I have continued to participate in every civic activity I could to promote peace and strengthen our democracy. It is the reason I decided to send this message to all  Nigerian youths. 

Democracy is known as the finest form of government. Why so? It is because in a democracy, the people of the country choose their leaders who will then form a government to lead them. 

They enjoy certain rights that are very essential for any human being to live freely and happily. On the other hand, Good governance has been defined to refer to structures and processes that are designed to ensure accountability, transparency, responsiveness, rule of law, stability, equity and inclusiveness, empowerment, and broad-based participation. 

Good governance also represents the norms, values and rules of the game through which public affairs are managed in a manner that is transparent, participatory, inclusive and responsive. 

If we want to continue to make our democracy work and deliver dividends, we must take the critical issues of participation and a vibrant democratic system in Nigeria as sacrosanct, and our youths must embrace what I termed political dynamism. Political dynamism can be defined as vigorous political activity that is geared towards progress, and strength in the polity. 

It is usually characterized by patriotism, service to the fatherland, and youth inclusivity. Youth can be a creative force, a dynamic source of innovations, and they have undoubtedly, throughout history, participated, contributed, and even catalyzed important changes in political systems, power-sharing dynamics, and economic opportunities.

However, young people also face poverty, barriers to education, multiple forms of discrimination, and limited employment prospects and opportunities. 

This is a global challenge although it differs across countries, and it is why the youth must take the issue of electing their leaders very seriously. Our greatest resource as a country is not crude oil or any of the natural minerals but our population, our youth. 

Today, we have the largest global youth population in history, and the large majority of young people around the world are committed to peace, sustainable development, and human rights. 

Throughout my time in the Army, I’ve met with many groups of young people, including youth groups, student groups, and young leaders. I’ve always been impressed by their talent, knowledge, and desire to make the world a better place.

If I should take you back to memory lane to the history of our founding fathers, which most people agree that Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto, and Chief Obafemi Awolowo agreed on, you will find out that they all started as youths fired by political dynamism. 

Dr. Azikiwe captured the nation’s attention when, in 1937, he arrived in Nigeria with an electrifying personality and a bundle of talents, and on November 22, 1937, he published the maiden edition of his popular newspaper, The West African Pilot. 

The Sardauna started to experiment with his leadership qualities right from Katsina Teachers’ College, and later on, through political dynamism characterized by inclusiveness of all ethnic nationalities in the North. Same with Awolowo who showed his people the power of education as a liberating and equalizing force in any society.

 All three of these great leaders practiced political dynamism characterized by non-violence, patriotism, human development, and service to humanity.

The first time all three met together was on Friday, June 19, 1953. Enahoro’s Self-Government-Now bill and the consequent resignation of all the Action Group’s federal ministers caused a constitutional crisis which made Nigeria ungovernable. 

Oliver Lyttleton, the secretary of state for colonies, tried to salvage the situation by inviting the main players to a constitutional conference in London. But Awolowo and Azikiwe, who had become friends since Enahoro’s bill was tabled, refused the terms and conditions. Because the Sardauna was fine with them, Macpherson, Nigeria’s governor, brought Sardauna, Azikiwe and Awolowo together in his office to jointly fashion new terms and conditions.

After the meeting, which ended at 10:10pm, he presented the trio to the media and the Daily Times the following day, naming them The Big Three. Since then, it has stuck that they were founding fathers because their tribes and their parties were the largest and because it offered an inclusive impression that all the regions had a say in the formation of the country.

In countries emerging from or facing conflicts, young people can engage in peace-building by leading non-violent movements and using innovative solutions to mobilize societies to bring about the needed transformation. 

Young people have demonstrated the potential to build bridges across communities, working together to help manage conflict and promote peace. Young people play a big role in conflict and peace-building, and they can be agents of peaceful change and help rebuild lives and communities, making the world a better place. 

President Muhammadu Buhari has laid a foundation for a new Nigeria. Despite the myriad of challenges, he has kept faith with his vision and principles. The youths must carry these vision and principles beyond this administration. The legacies must be protected for a greater Nigeria and a formidable future generations. 

My message to young people today is that they must not let themselves be used as willing tools by do-or-die politicians who want to stir up trouble in their communities. Instead, you must embrace the tenets of political dynamism and root out every factor that contributes to the democracy deficit in Nigeria, namely voter apathy, ballot snatching, looting, arson, and the likes. 

You constitute a large percentage of our voting and working population. You are also going to be the number one population block that will suffer the consequences of bad governance and incompetent leaders in the future. 

Therefore, you must do everything to safeguard your future survival and welfare in mind. Get actively involved in the democratic process by joining a political party and electing those who will lead you. Remember that voting is a civic duty expected of every Nigerian.

I thank you all  Great Nigerian Youths. 

Ambassador Tukur Yusufu Buratai (Lt Gen Rtd) was Nigeria’s ex Chief of Army Staff and presently Ambassador of the country to Benin Republic

Ambassador Buratai Distances himself from Presidential Campaigns

Former Chief Of Army Staff(COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, has distanced himself from campaign posters by some group of persons calling on him to contest for the 2023 presidential elections.

Buratai, who is also Nigeria’s Ambassador to Republic of Benin, said he has never indicated interest in politics or declared his intention to contest for the office of president in next year’s general elections. He reiterated his contentment and commitment to national service in his present capacity as Nigeria’s Ambassador to the Benin Republic.

He has therefore called on the public to ignore the posters which he said is the handiwork of mischief makers for reasons best known to them.

Buratai, made this known in a statement signed by former director army public relations officer Brigadier General Sani Usman, issued in Abuja.

The statement made available to Newsmen, reads; “The attention of His Excellency, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusufu Buratai (rtd), Nigeria’s Ambassador to Republic of Benin and former Chief of Army Staff, has been drawn to calls and dissemination of campaign posters calling on him to join partisan politics and contest for Presidential candidature of one of the political parties by some persons.

“However, it is essential to state that the Ambassador has never indicated interest, discussed with, or directed anyone on such matters. Therefore, such calls and posters should be  discountenance as they did not emanate from him, nor is he interested in them. It is entirely the handiwork of some people for reasons best known to them.

“His Excellency wishes to reiterate his contentment and commitment to national service in his present capacity as Nigeria’s Ambassador to the Benin Republic. He remains loyal and eternally grateful to President Muhammadu Buhari for the opportunity to serve. He, however, wishes to thank all well-meaning persons, friends and well-wishers who showed concern over this development”.


…Succeeds General Eyitayo as the Number 11 GOC. 
Major General Waidi Shaibu has on Friday, 21 January, 2022 assummed command and leadership of 7 Division Nigerian Army as the number 11 General Officer Commanding and Commander Sector 1 Operation HADIN KAI.
General Shaibu a member of Course 41 Regular Combatant Course and from the Nigerian Army Armour Corps whom until his appointment as the GOC was the Director of Training at Army Headquarters Department of Training Abuja. He was also the former Commander, 21 Special Armour Brigade Bama with wealth of experience in the ongoing fight against insurgency in the North East having been at the forefront of the Sambisa Forest and environs.
The handing and taking over ceremony was conducted in 3 phases in accordance with the Nigerian Army tradition. It commenced on Thursday, 20 January with a facility tour to notable ongoing projects within Maimalari Cantonment. A guided tour was also taken to 7 Division Medical Services and Hospital where they met and commisserate with wounded in action troops.
The second day of the handing over ceremony and grand finale was the signing of handing and taking over notes, address to officers and troops by the outgoing and incoming GOC as well as the lowering of the old flag signifying the end of an era and hoisting of a new flag also signifying the begining of a new command.
Earlier, the outgone GOC Major General AA Eyitayo expressed immense gratitude to God Almighty for the gift of life and blessings upon him. He also appreciates the immense support, sacrifices and commitment of Formations and unit Commamders, officers and troops of the Division adding that their absolute cooperation and loyalty earns him the accolades and successes he recorded during his tenure. He therefore urge them to extend same cooperation to his successor.
In his remarks, the new GOC commend the outgone GOC for his leadership style in ensuring the Division maintains the tempo in the fight against insurgency.  While soliciting for same cooperation and supoort accorded to his predessesor, he charged officers and troops to remain resilient, dogged and more committed with  determination, we will bring an end to this insurgency he stated.
Highlights of the occasion were the signing of handing and taking over notes, address to officers and troops, lowering of old and hoisting of new flags at the quarter guard, group photograph with officers and finally departure by the outgone GOC.

The ceremony was witnessed by Formations and Units Commanders, Principal Staff Officers from Headquarters 7 Division and gentlemen officers amongst others.

African Union Commends MNJTF Efforts, Approves Renewal Of Mandate

The transformation of Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) into a formidable force commenced in 2014, when Boko Haram Terrorists (BHT) scaled up their nefarious activities leading to the wanton destruction of lives and properties of the communities in the Lake Chad Basin.

According to a statement signed by the Chief of Military Public Information HQ MNJTF N’Djamena Chad, Colonel Muhammad Dole, dated January 21, 2022, this necessitated the members nations of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) to fall back on the existing security framework of the MNJTF.

Accordingly, at its 484th Meeting of Heads of States and Governments held in Addis Ababa on 29 January 2015, the African Union Peace and Security Council (AUPSC) decided to support the efforts of the LCBC Member States and Benin through an authorization of the deployment of the MNJTF.

Thus, the MNJTF was remodeled and re-operationalized with an increased capacity of about 10,000 troops and its new Headquarters located in N’Djamena – Chad.

The MNJTF was then mandated among others to “create a safe and secure environment in the areas affected by the activities of Boko Haram and other terrorist groups, in order to significantly reduce violence against civilians and other abuses.

The Force started operations on 30th July 2015 with Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria as Troops Contributing Countries.

In a reminiscence of the activities of the Force against the BHT/ISWAP terrorists, the AUPSC at its 1057th virtual meeting held on 14 January 2022 considered the report on MNJTF and decided to renew its mandates for another period of twelve (12) months with effect from 01 February 2022 .

During the meeting, members of the Council, Chairpersons of ECOWAS, and ECCAS, the Head of Mission MNJTF, Ambassador Mamman Nuhu and the Force Commander MNJTF Major General AK Ibrahim extensively deliberated on the progress and challenges of the Force.

The Council noted with appreciation and commended the significant recorded progress and display of commitment by the Force in fighting the insurgents.

They applauded the dedication and determination of the troops towards degrading the operational capability of the BHT/ISWAP terrorists in the region.

The Council equally paid tribute to the soldiers and civilians that have paid the ultimate price and expressed heartfelt condolences to the families and Governments of those that have lost their lives in the course of fight against terror.

While condemning the obnoxious activities of the terrorists against the civilians and troops, which have exacerbated serious humanitarian crisis in the region, the Council reiterated its resolve to mobilise adequate resources and support for the MNJTF to enhance its professional capabilities in combating the menace of the insurgents.

In recognition and appreciation of the tremendous support of the European Union (EU) to MNJTF, AU repeated its appeals to members states, other strategic partners and international community to redouble their humanitarian support to the affected communities to enable them safely resettle in their ancestral home.

The AU Commission assured the MNJTF of its necessary support to enable it consolidates on the recorded operational successes against the BHT/ISWAP terrorists and violent extremism in the Lake Chad region.

Adding that it will heighten its efforts to supporting the LCBC to deepen the partnership with the ECOWAS and ECCAS, as well as other relevant regional institutions and non-Governmental organisations.

MNJTF Commander Urges Troops To Be Focused, Ruthless In Decimating Remnants Of BHTs, ISWAP

The Force Commander (FC) Multinational Joint Task Force, Maj Gen Abdul Khalifah Ibrahim made an operational visit to Headquarters 3 Battalion in Gamboru Ngala on January 18, 22.

According to a statement signed by the Chief of Military Public Information HQ MNJTF Ndjamena Chad, Colonel Muhammad Dole dated January 19, 2022, the FC was received by the Commanding Officer (CO) Lt Col AS Olasegbe.

The FC and his entourage were given an operational brief by the CO and thereafter, entertained by the cultural dancing groups of the Ngala community.

The FC addressed troops of the Battalion and thanked them for their courage doggedness and dedication.

He encouraged them to be more focused and ruthless in decimating the remnants of the BHTs/ ISWAP by supporting their CO in his operations.

He also informed them that he has been briefed on their extended stay in the mission area and he is also aware being their former general officer commanding,he however assured them that the AHQ was working assiduously to rotate them soonest and that they should remain patient disciplined as always.

The FC then addressed the Civilian Joint Task Force and Hunters in Gamboru by thanking them for volunteering to assist the military whenever called upon and assured them that plans were underway to ensure an end is brought to the menace of the BHts/ISWAP. He also met separately with government officials and representatives of security agencies in the area.

Thereafter, the FC and his entourage accompanied by the CO 3 Battalion visited the MNJTF Sector 1 (Cameroun) troops at Wulgo.

The Commander Col Njock John William received the FC and his entourage and gave them an operational brief at his Headquarters.

The FC commended the Commander and his men for their hard work in holding their ground in-spite of the repeated attacks by the BHTs/ISWAP. He thanked them for their service and promised to support them at all times.

The FC called for more collaboration between the MNJTF troops and the 3 Bn troops in order to rid their AOR of the terrorists. The FC then addressed the Civilian Joint Task Force and Hunters in Wulgo by thanking them for volunteering to assist the military whenever called upon and assured them that plans were underway to ensure an end is brought to the menace of the BHts/ISWAP.

The FC was taken on a guided tour of Wulgo town where it was observed that normalcy had been restored as traders were in the markets and farmers were in their farms.

The FC also had a meeting with the Theatre Commander Op HADIN KAI who was also on an operational tour of his area of responsibility. Issues discussed bordered on improving synergy and cooperation between the 2 operations.

Visit was hitch free and the FC has returned to his Headquarters in Ndjamena Chad.

In another development, the FC MNJTF Major General Abdul Khalifah Ibrahim assured the United Nations (UN) continuous collaboration and synergy with its agencies in the course of execution of MNJTF mandates.

The FC made the remarks when he received a UN delegation led by the Deputy Director, Regional Operations Division, United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) Mrs Poussin Florence at the HQ MNJTF on 19 January 2022.

General Ibrahim welcomed the delegation and expressed appreciation for the visit, which he said will surely reinforce and enhance the exiting relationship.

As part of the activities marking the visit, an information brief detailing the MNJTF activities was presented to the delegation and thereafter an interactive session took place.

While highlighting some of the MNJTF mandate, the Force Commander was emphatic on the positive impact of critical roles of the UN agencies and other Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in the implementation of the MNJTF mandate.

He added that, the MNJTF facilitates the return of the IDPs and refugees to their ancestral homes, hence the urgent need for UN intervention to stabilize the situation in the Lake Chad region.

“The personnel of the MNJTF across the sectors are equally engaged in retraining on Human rights and International Humanitarian laws, so as to keep abreast with contemporary global best practices” he said.

In her remarks, while acknowledging the unique nature of the MNJTF of using a collective approach to solving the security challenges within the region, Mrs Poussin Florence thanked the FC for the detailed brief and warm reception to the delegation.

She said, UN will continue to support and collaborate with MNJTF to enable it achieve its mandates. Explaining that, the UNDSS is responsible for risk management by assessing the level of risks of any programme proposed by the UN to its different strategic partners.

She commended the recorded successes of the Force, as she noted that the intensity of the terrorists’ obnoxious activities have considerably reduced in the Lake Chad basin. The visits were hitch free.


The attention of the Nigerian Army has been drawn to an online publication by Daily of 9th January 2022, alleging that 2 soldiers and 7 illegal miners were killed during a gun duel, arising from a disagreement over gold nuggets in Magama village in Jibia LGA of Katsina State.
According to the publication, the incident occurred when the soldiers turned down an initially agreed offer of 500,000 naira per pit from the miners, but afterwards, turned around to demand more money on discovering the large quantum of gold nuggets found by the illegal miners in one of the pits.

The Nigerian Army wishes to unequivocally state that this story is baseless, unfounded, untrue and a mere figment of the writer’s imagination, aimed at tarnishing the reputation of the Nigerian Army, as no Nigerian soldier was killed, nor involved in any skirmish with illegal miners in Magama village on 5 January 2022.

Contrary to the insinuations peddled by the online medium, Nigerian Army troops deployed in the North West are committed and engrossed in the fight against banditry and other criminalities bedeviling that region. They are not permitted to participate in any form of mining, whether legitimate or illegitimate.

Aside orchestrating disrepute, Fake News as this, have the potential to dampen the morale of the fighting troops, erode their fighting will and undermine the entire operations. This is certainly not what the troops require at this critical time.

The general public are therefore urged to disregard the fake news as it is concocted to denigrate Nigerian Army troops, who are working tirelessly to ensure sanity and peace return to the North west region. We assure the general public of the unrelenting commitment of our troops to decisively tackle the banditry menace in the North West.

Brigadier General
Director Army Public Relations
9 January 2022

Create your website with
Get started