By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
The Senate has issued a directive to the Nigerian Navy to immediately reinstate Lt. Yahaya Yakubu, who was dismissed by the Nigerian Navy in 2001 over a false accusation of stealing 5, 800 litres of diesel.
According to the Senate’s findings, he was wrongfully recommended for dismissal by the Navy Court Martial, which found him guilty of an alleged conspiracy and stealing.
The decision by the Senate to reinstate Yakubu was as result of the recommendations of the Senate Committee which investigated his sack following his petition to the Senate.
Yakubu had petitioned the Senate over his wrongful indictment and subsequent imprisonment.
His indictment was subsequently ratified by the Nigerian Navy Board.
Not satisfied by the judgment Yakubu, a 1994 a Marine Engineer graduate of the Nigeria Defence Academy who was serving with the Eastern Naval Command of the Nigerian Navy until his dismissal challenged the verdict at the Court of Appeal in Calabar.
The Appellate court, according to the Senate report, reviewed the judgment, raised areas of concern and rendered the whole proceedings of the court martial a nullity, saying that the members of the General Court Martial violated the right to fair hearing.
The report, which was signed by the Chairman, Senate committee on Ethics and Privileges, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, and Clerk of the committee, Mr. Jonathan Toruemi, ordered the reinstatement of Yakubu.