The minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed has said that the soldiers fighting Boko Haram in the North-East, are being taken care of.

Mohammed said this following a report that soldiers posted to fight the terror group are being starved.

The minister said this while speaking at a press conference in Abuja on Tuesday, October 30, 2018.

Mohammed said that the report is false, describing it as a great disservice to the Nigerian military, according to Daily Post.

Committee report

According to Mohammed, President Buhari ordered an investigation into the matter when he heard the report.

The minister announced that the investigation has been concluded and the report submitted.

“Gentlemen, the investigation has since been concluded and, in line with the transparent stance of this Administration, I have invited you here today to share with you the outcome. The summary of the findings is that there is no case of hunger, starvation or begging among the troops fighting in the North East, and in particular in the Armed Forces Special Forces Battalion that was referenced in the publication,” he said.

Allowances are being paid

The minister also said that all the soldiers are being paid and properly kitted for the job.

He said ”There is also no irregular/short payment of allowances, while claims of poor equipment, inadequate kitting and accommodation are found to be ill conceived and unfounded.

“The troops in question, deployed at Brig.-Gen. Maimalari Secondary School along Gubio Road, are being fed centrally three times a day, and are kitted immediately after their training before they are deployed in the theatre.

“How then can soldiers who are fed centrally be starving or begging for food? Concerning the payment of allowances, the monthly allowances of troops of the AFSF Battalion are being paid directly into their various accounts from the Defence Headquarters, hence they cannot be shortchanged.

“If anything, the publication in question exhibited poor understanding of what obtains in the theatre of military operations. For example, the claim of poor accommodation in an operational environment. By their training, soldiers in theatres of war are usually in trenches, tents or other makeshift structures. Fighting insurgency is not a walk in the park and the gallant men and women in uniform who are engaged in counter-insurgency operation in the North East are not on a luxurious expedition. The battlefront is no playground.”

In February 2018, the Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, handed out cheques worth over N800 million to the next of kin of soldiers who died in the line of duty.

According to Dan-Ali, the gesture is part of the commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to ensure that soldiers who die in active service are well catered for.


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