Anti-corruption campaigners on Friday called on the National Assembly to investigate the recent theft of a large amount of cash by soldiers.
PREMIUM TIMES broke the news last Saturday, how soldiers carted away money they were asked to take to Abuja from Sokoto.
However, military sources estimated the amount to be in billions to PREMIUM TIMES, and identified Hakeem Otiki, the general officer commanding of the Nigerian Army 8 Division in Sokoto as the coordinator of the cash haul.
Mr Otiki has not spoken about the matter, and several enquiries to the Nigerian Army spokesperson, Sagir Musa, about the theft were ignored throughout the week.
A joint statement by anti-graft networks, Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA) and Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre/Transparency International Nigeria (CISLAC), said Nigerians deserve to know the story behind the scandal that has caused so much embarrassment to the nation.
The campaigners also said it was unfortunate that the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, has refused to speak on the embarrassing development.
“We call on the National Assembly to probe this incidence. The House Committee on Defense needs to provide the necessary clue. There is no doubt that the action of these soldiers will have a serious impact on the campaign against terrorism.
“The Senate should get to the root of this matter before it is too late. If nothing is done, other soldiers on the frontline may be encouraged to embark of stealing of national assets,” Olanrewaju Suraju of HEDA and Anwalu Rafsanjani of CISLAC stated.
The groups said the Senate should unravel the owner of the money to either confirm or deny speculations that the funds belonged to Mr Otiki.
The organisations said the stealing of the money by soldiers who should represent a qualitative moral fabric of the country has raised serious questions about Nigeria’s commitment to the fight against corruption.