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Nigeria Defence Academy did not stop recruitment of female cadets as claimed in Twitter post

Photo source: Nigerian Defence Academy (Facebook) 4 mins read

Claim: A Twitter user, DEMAGOGUE PhD (@von_Bismack), posted a tweet claiming that the Nigerian government has cancelled the admission and training of female cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA).

The claim that the Nigerian government has cancelled the admission and training of female cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy is FALSE.

Full Text

On March 16, 2021, DEMAGOGUE PhD (@von_Bismack), a twitter user posted a tweet declaring that the Nigerian government has cancelled the admission and training of female cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA). The post reads “This Government cancelled female cadets from NDA and our Feminists kept mute. If the topic is abt (sic) food, they all will rise like soaked garri but will go mute when their vileness is needed most.”

Within 48 hours, the tweet had garnered 297 retweets, 37 quote tweets and 577 likes.

Verification

Dubawa conducted a keyword search on the admission process and eligibility of female cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA). Dubawa also studied the lists of successful candidates for admission into the NDA, since it began admission of female cadets in 2011 and discovered that the Academy has been admitting female cadets every year.

List of successful candidates for admission into the NDA RC72 spotting a number of females on the list
List of successful candidates for admission into the NDA RC71 spotting a number of females on the list

Findings by Dubawa show that the Nigerian Defence Academy began the admission of female cadets in 2011, following a directive by the then President, Goodluck Jonathan GCFR.

The first set of female cadets, nicknamed Jonathan Queens, numbering 20, were admitted into the 63rd Regular Combatant Course (63RC) of the NDA in September 2011, alongside 155 male cadets. In October 2016, 19 female cadets of the 63RC graduated and were commissioned as officers in the Nigerian Armed Forces by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Eligibility requirements for admission into the Nigerian Defence Academy as listed on the institution’s official website, indicate that candidates eligible for admission into the institution “must be single male or female without legal obligation to support any child or other individuals”. It also states that candidates “must NOT be less than 1.68 metres tall for male and 1.65 metres for female, also noting that “admission into the Academy is for both male and female Nigerians only”.

Screenshot of the eligibility requirement from the NDA website

The guidelines also indicate that the “NDA has an annual cadets’ intake of 175 for the RC (regular course). This comprises 155 males and 20 females”.

An assessment of the list of successful candidates for admission into the NDA since 2011, when the admission female cadets began shows that the female cadets have been admitted into the NDA every year, since its 63rd Regular Course in 2011.

Some female cadets undergoing training at the Nigerian Defence Academy

The then Defence Spokesperson (now Coordinator, Defence Media Operations), John Enenche, had also debunked reports about the stoppage of training female cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy. Mr. Enenche, an Army Major General, described the report as “disinformation to the general public by mischievous individuals”. “The contents of all those publications are ill-intended concoctions, not authentic and should therefore be disregarded outrightly”.

He noted that female cadets are “eligible for all the types of commission that are grantable to their male counterparts”, as provided by the terms and conditions of service of the Nigerian Armed Forces, which he said “has not changed”.

Conclusion

The claim that the Federal Government had cancelled the admission or training of female cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) is FALSE. Findings have revealed that since it started admitting female cadets in September 2011, the NDA has NEVER stopped the admission and training of female cadets, neither has there been any directives by the Federal Government for its cancellation.

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