- REVEALED: How Retired Commodore Kunle Olawunmi was Denied Promotion Thrice by Navy Board
A former Deputy Defence Adviser in Paris, France, retired Navy Commodore Kunle Olawunmi, who alleged islamization of Nigeria under the current adminisation, was denied promotion to the enviable rank of Rear Admiral in the Nigerian Navy despite the fact that he was the most qualified at some point.
The Intelligence Officer who recently in a controversial television interview with Channel TV described himself as Professor of Global Security Studies, said that he was among the people that helped bring Buhari to power.
“I was among the people that brought Buhari to government because I believed in him… I worked with him after we bring him to power in 2015. We have a lot of hope in him and we were ready to do anything for him… What he has turned out to over the years is shocking.”
In the interview, Olawunmi said that some Governors, ministers and Senators are sponsors of Boko Haram and added that Bureau De Change operators are also sponsors of Boko Haram which is also known to the government.
He insisted that the government is encouraging Islamization when he said that every Friday NDA and all government institutions opened their premises for Jumat prayers. He said Muslims come on Friday for worship in military formations and later they become members of the mess who would later spy on the institution and plan their attacks.
Meanwhile, Emergency Digest gathered that the Senior Officer was recommended for promotion board interview on three different occasions during the tenure of former Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ete-Ibas, and on the three occasions, his name was dropped by the Ibas administration.
According to investigations, Commodore Olawunmi who was commissioned into the Nigerian Navy through the Onura entry Course 4, was appointed Deputy Defence Adviser during the tenure of Vice Admiral GA Adekeye (Rtd) as Chief of the Naval Staff.
A source said that serving as a Defence Adviser or a Deputy Defence Adviser in a Foreign Country is a Special privilege for Military Officers, an appointment which only about 3% of officers enjoy in their carreer.
“In that regard, Commodore Olawunmi can be counted as one of few privileged officers in the Nigerian Navy at the period when Vice Admiral Adekeye held sway as CNS.
“Having been presented for promotion three consecutive times during the tenure of the immediate past CNS and was rejected on each occasion despite at least on one occasion where he topped the list and being the only PhD holder, can be very frustrating especially when those who eventually got the promotions were not better, considering all the criteria” a source said.
Aside the fact that he missed promotion on three occasions which eventually led to his retirement, Sources said that he thought that President Buhari was behind his nemesis and that ‘may’ have elicited some grieviances from the officer
“Many of his colleagues, both seniors and junior officers believed he deserved to be promoted before he was retired in 2016 by the former CNS having exhausted his 3 chances for promotion to rank of Rear Admiral.
”Before leaving service Commodre Olawunmi, never hid his disenchantment with the Nigerian Navy and in the CNS for denying him promotion he felt he deserved.
“However, I don’t think the former CNS, Vice Admiral Ibas should be blamed for not promoting such a brilliant officer because the buck stops on the table on Mr. President, Muhammadu Buhari. Efforts would have been made to find out why such an excellent officer was being treated shabbily”.
Another source added, “Retired Commodore Olawunmi allowed his disgruntlement with the Nigerian Navy to boil over. He may have been treated shabbily by the Navy under CNS Ibas but certainly he is not the only person to have suffered such.
“But it is unfortunate that as a retired senior military officer reduced all Nigeria’s security problems from insurgency to banditry to kidnapping, to a conspiracy theory of a plan to islamize Nigeria, introduce Sharia and taliibanize the country.
“One thing about serving in the military is that it reduces one’s biases and bigotry. Even if it doesn’t cure you of it completely, you would come out more balanced, more tolerant of others”.
“CNS Adekeye made him Deputy Defense Adviser, France and he also had foreign stints in Angola and Niger. Not all officers get such opportunities. Consequently, one can say in sum that Commodore Olawunmi saw both the good and the bad of military service. There are some like him who do not benefit from such military experience”.