The Minister of Defence, Brig-Gen. Mansur Dan-Ali, Monday said the recent forced retirement of senior Army officers, was necessitated by alleged corruption and professional misconduct established against the affected officers.
This was as the Nigerian Army clarified that, contrary to reports making the rounds, only 38 officers were given the boot.
While offering clarification on the sacking, which has raised a lot of dust in the polity, Dan-Ali maintained that none of the officers was wrongly sacked.
The minister further explained that the 38 officers were given a fair hearing, having been earlier summoned to defend themselves on findings by a Board established to investigate allegations of partisanship and financial corruption.
Dan-Ali urged the public to see the retirement exercise as a step in the direction of reforms in the Nigerian Armed Forces.
Many had imputed ethnic motive to the forced retirement of officers, saying it was carefully done to weed-out officers from a particular region.
But, the Defence Minister said the development was well-intentioned, as it was far from being an exercise in witch-hunt.