About 24 Major Generals in the Nigerian Army will face retirement, following the appointment of Major General Faruq Yahaya as the new Chief of Army Staff, COAS.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday appointed Mr Yahaya, an indigene of Sokoto State, to succeed late Ibrahim Attahiru, the immediate-past COAS.
Mr Attahiru, a Lieutenant General, had died on Friday, May 21, 2021, in a plane crash at the Kaduna International Airport.
A document showing the Nigerian Army personnel hierarchy or seniority revealed that there are 13 Northerners, 11 Southerners who are seniors to Mr Yahaya, the immediate-past Theatre Commander, Operation HADIN KAI.
A document showing those above the new COAS in terms of seniority, which was analyzed, indicated that the North West, the place Faruq hails from, has three Major Generals who are above him, in seniority.
They are Major Generals MSA Aliyu, YP Auta, and J Sarham.
The North Central has four Generals who are above the new Army Chief. They are JO Akomolafe, UM Mohammed, NE Angbazo, and Kay Isiyaku.
Those from the North East, who are six in number, include Major Generals AS Maikobi, SA Yaro, AT Hamman, AM Aliyu, HPZ Vintenaba, and IM Yusuf.
From the South West, these five Major Generals–JB Olawumi, G Oyefesobi, BM Shafa, BA Akinroluyo, and KO Kadiri–are Faruq’s senior in the Army.
There are Generals CO Ude, MO Uzoh, CC Okonkwo, BI Ahanotu, and OF Azinta, all from the South East, who ‘senior’ the newly appointed COAS.
Major General HE Ayamasaowei from Bayelsa State is the only Army senior officer from the South-South who is also Faruq’s senior.
There are nevertheless over 100 officers on the rank of Major General currently in the Nigerian Army.
The choice of Mr Yahaya, according to a retired military officer who spoke on anonymity was because the new COAS belongs to the elite infantry corps that belongs to the combat and operational forces in the Army.
“The Nigerian Army as a multidisciplinary arm has some Major Generals that senior Faruk Yahaya but are neither from combat nor in the combat supporting corps known as fighting arms.
“In terms of military operation officers from the infantry, armour, and artillery are usually knowledgeable and skillful on battlegrounds and counter-insurgency operations.
“Other corps from intelligence, signals, police and engineering provide supporting roles. Some other Major Generals are in the administrative and general corps such as Public Relations, Education, Medical and Chaplaincy among others whose roles do not include combat operations,” he said.