From Molly Kilete. Abuja
The Defence Headquarters (DHQ), Thursday denied reports that some Service Chiefs were illegally extending the military careers of their course mates.
It also said there is no act of illegality perpetrated by either the Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Naval Staff or Chief of the Air Staff, as far as extending the length of service for military officers was concerned.
Director, Defence Information, Gen. John Enenche, who made this known, maintained that an officer’s career can be extended based on the interest of the Service he belongs to.
Citing the Harmonized Terms and Conditions of Service (HTACOS), 2012, Paragraph 02: 10 (b), that those peddling the rumor of illegal extension of service are dwelling on. He said the perpetrators failed to give “insight into other sections of the Paragraph that provide specifically for extension of service for a commissioned officer.
He said: ”In view of this kind of an unbalanced publication, the Defence Headquarters wishes to posit that; Paragraph 02:10 (d) of Armed Forces of Nigeria, Harmonized Terms and Conditions of Service, officers, 2012 is clear on the considerations for extending the length of service for officers, which are summarized as follows.
Enenche, in a statement, said” “An officer’s career can be extended based on the interest of the Service, in this case, Army, Navy and Air force”.
He said “in very exceptional cases, an officer’s career can be extended beyond one year for as long as necessary.
“Extension of service for officers can only be approved by the Service council/board comprising of the Minister of Defence, Chief of Defence Staff, the Service Chiefs, Service Director at Ministry of Defence and Permanent Secretary Ministry of Defence.
“Extension of service for officers can also be at the discretion of the Commander in Chief.
He said “From the foregoing, I wish to state that there was no act of illegality perpetuated by the Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Naval staff or Chief of the Air Staff, regarding extending the length of service for officers. Extant guidelines and policies are always followed as laid out in the aforementioned document when the need arises. It also worthy of note, that quite a good number of the officers mentioned in the article are no longer in service. “Only very few are still in service, in the interest of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, which is in line with Harmonized Terms and Conditions of Service for Officers, 2012, Paragraph 02.10 (d)”.