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On Fela’s birthday, his nephew, Enitan, is dismissed from the Nigerian army

On Fela’s birthday, his nephew, Enitan, is dismissed from the Nigerian army
October 17
14:04 2015

Were he alive, Afrobeat maestro and legend, Fela Anikulapo kuti, would have been 77 on Thursday.

But in a manner similar to repaying him for the acrimonious relationship between them – Fela had a long-running battle with the Nigerian army – the army relieved Enitan Ransome-Kuti, a brigadier general, from service on October 15, 2015 – a day Fela’s post-humous birthday was being celebrated across the world.

Enitan is the son of Beko Kuti, one of the three boys sired by Israel Ransome-Kuti, Fela’s father.

In his lifetime, Fela did not spare the army the length of his tongue any time the opportunity to do so presented itself; and 18 years after his death, his nephew was shown the way out of the military.

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According to Sani Usman, army spokesman, Enitan, a former commander of the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF), was dismissed after being convicted of failing to perform his duty.

“I wish to confirm that one of the accused persons, Brigadier General EA Ransome-Kuti was awarded the following punishments on the various count charges against him as follows,” he said in response to inquiries by TheCable.

“The first count charge, which was cowardly behaviour, was struck out but he was found guilty on count charge number 2, which was failure to perform military duties and was dismissed from the Nigerian Army.

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“He was equally found guilty on count charge number 3, which was miscellaneous offences relating to service property and was awarded 6 months imprisonment.”

The travails of Enitan began after Boko Haram attacked the town of Baga in Borno state in January.

Human rights group, Amnesty International, described that attack as one of the deadliest in the history of the sect.

The army arrested him alongside four senior officers – O.C. Ajunwa, a colonel; A. Haruna, a colonel; G.A. Suru, a colonel and A.A. Malgwi, a major – for failing to repel the attack.

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They were subsequently court-martialed but their hopes of being pardoned came alive when the government of President Muhammadu Buhari came on board.

Some officers who were being tried for different offences relating to insurgency were released after the sack of the former service chiefs.

But the general court martial at the army headquarters garrison ruled otherwise in the case of Enitan, who had been in detention since then.

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