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Navy Seaman Cries Out, alleges maltreatment, torture by Naval Chief

A seaman in the Nigerian Navy, Haruna Goshit, has accused the Chief of Policy and Plans (COPP), Rear Admiral Ifeola Mohammed, of allegedly maltreating and physically ‘brutalizing’ him.

Goshit, who hails from Jos, in Plateau State, said the Navy senior officer, on several occasions, meted out on him various kinds punishments and inhuman treatments, while he served as his orderly.

In a 15-minute video obtained by PRNigeria, the young navy officer, said: “While I was his orderly, he used to maltreat me like a master to his slave. We were three that was sent to him as orderly, but he picked only me.”

Goshit, disclosed that Rear Admiral Mohammed began maltreating him right from the first day he started working for him.

“There was a time I told him I will travel, he asked me to go and withdraw money from my account, and give it to one Mall. Ibrahim to do some repair works in his house. And after I returned from my trip, he did not refund my money.

“When I came back, I was paid RCA. This man then went ahead to punish me. He asked me to go hug a tree with soldier ants, and let them be biting me. He even called his wife on video, and showed me hugging the tree. He told her that I was paid RCA and I did not come to appreciate him. I reported him to Navy authority after that.”

He then continued further: “Rear Admiral Mohammed once asked me to pay a carpenter and plumber for repairing some items in house, yet he didn’t pay me back. I recorded everything, and reported him again. Yet nothing was done. There was a time he took me to Apo Shoprite and asked me to trek back to Niger Barracks. I have been reporting him, yet no action has been taking. Instead they will me what do I want them to do to him. He is a senior officer.

“Not only that, I often follow his children to clubs, dressed in Khaki, and returned home with them in the morning. Again, I also sweep and mop his house almost everyday. Yet he will keep punishing me, and hitting me on my head. Every time I used to buy panadol and put in my pocket. I have never seen his type in the Armed Forces. Because, if it is like that, people will not join the Armed Forces anymore. I want to tell Nigerians that I have the zeal to do my job well, but this man is discouraging me with the way he his treating me.

“There was a time he made Navy’s military police to arrest me and locked me up in a guard room for 23 days. While in the guard room he came with the provost marshal and they seized my phone because of the records I have in them. They thought I will use the recordings against them and implicate them. So they seized it and went ahead to format it. After I was released, I was demoted in rank.”

Goshit, explained that after he was released both he and his lawyer wrote separate letters of complaint to the Naval Commander, Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) and Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). But no any action was taken.

He said after they wrote the complaint letters, they Naval Headquarters summoned him to their legal department.

He added: “When I got there, a female Commodore told me she learnt that I have never committed any offence. She said this is the first time I will be reported. Because of that she returned my rank back to me and pleaded with me to withdraw the case. But I told her I will not withdraw the case. She then told me that before she became the Director of Legal Services, she saw a picture were this same Rear Admiral hung his orderly on the tree. But even with that evidence, the case could not go anywhere. She said they cannot do anything to him, so it is better I withdraw the case. So, I want to tell Nigerians that I am not safe.

“The navy has failed me, the way the Armed Forces has failed me, and Nigerians, because I have written letters of complaint to them and they failed to act. Therefore, I want the Human Rights Commission, the Presidency, and both the Senate and House of Reps to intervene in my matter. I am no longer safe. These people will want to come and arrest me. But I am ready to die from whatever the Navy wants to do to me.”

When contacted on the issue, the Navy Director of Information, Commodore Suleman Dahun told PRNigeria that he was just getting to know about the incident from the reporter.

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