ARMY LOCKS UP SOLDIER EARNING 50K WHO COMPLAINED THAT HE NEEDS 70K TO VISIT HIS FAMILY

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ARMY LOCKS UP SOLDIER EARNING N50K WHO LAMENTED HE NEEDS 70k TO VISIT HIS FAMILY

A Nigerian soldier stationed in Maiduguri, Borno State who expressed his frustration at being unable to visit his family due to the transport fare has been detained by the army, military sources said..

The soldier had in a trending video lamented how he spent one year in the bush in Borno and was given a pass to visit his family but could not go because of his N50,000 salary.

He said he was told at the motor park that the transport fare to his town was N35,000, meaning that the trip would cost him N70,000 to and fro.

Speaking in pidgin English, the soldier said, “See wahala oo, the Nigerian Army gave me a pass as I spent one year in Maiduguri today, they gave me a pass to go and see my family.

“As I left the bush, I reached the park and they (transporters) told me that from here to my town is N35,000. I calculated it and going and coming back is N70,000 and N50,000 is my salary that I was paid this month.

“I don’t have any option again; I’m going back to the bush.”

Multiple sources on Tuesday told SaharaReporters that the soldier had been locked up in the ‘guardroom’ for days over the video, considered embarrassing by the army authorities.

“Our colleague who complained about the transport fare more than his salary has been locked up in the guardroom,” one of the sources said.

SaharaReporters had reported how the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Christopher Musa, said that soldiers and military officers earn less than N50,000 as monthly salaries while Generals and soldiers on operations get N1,200 for feeding daily.

The CDS disclosed this during an interview where he said that Nigerian soldiers and military officers were doing well and therefore should be paid salaries that were worth the jobs to encourage them to do more.

SaharaReporters has done several reports on soldiers lamenting poor feeding, poor salaries, poor medical treatment and poor welfare packages in general despite abandoning their families, putting their lives on the line with massive promises by the Nigerian government.

On December 11, SaharaReporters reported how troops attached to 145 Taskforce Battalion of the Nigerian Army in Damasak, Borno State for Operation Hadi Kai lamented the alleged misuse of power against their rights by their Commanding Officer.

The soldiers who spoke on condition of anonymity over fear of victimization also lamented acute hunger.

The soldiers who lamented that they were not being properly fed, called for the immediate intervention of President Bola Tinubu and military chiefs to address the issue of poor treatment of soldiers on the front lines, sacrificing their lives daily.

Apart from not being given good food, the soldiers lamented that many of their colleagues had been killed by terrorists because the military lacked adequate firepower and equipment to combat the insurgents.

In what seems to be the affirmation of the claims made by the soldiers, the Chief of Defence Staff said, “The issue of ration cash allowance where we feed, any time we are on operations, I, as a General I’m being fed on N1,200 per day with my soldiers, from the first General to the last soldier, the same amount. That is what we manage with.

“My soldiers collect less than N50,000 for a salary a month. We all know the situation on ground. My appeal is for them to have salaries that are worth the work they are doing. We deserve to have that so that it will encourage them to do more.“We have a lot of them that have been injured, families separated for a very long time. These are the morale aspect of it that we check to actually ginger the troops to want to do more.”

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About Dons Eze

DONS EZE, PhD, Political Philosopher and Journalist of over four decades standing, worked in several newspaper houses across the country, and rose to the positions of Editor and General Manager. A UNESCO Fellow in Journalism, Dr. Dons Eze, a prolific writer and author of many books, attended several courses on Journalism and Communication in both Nigeria and overseas, including a Postgraduate Course on Journalism at Warsaw, Poland; Strategic Communication and Practical Communication Approach at RIPA International, London, the United Kingdom, among others.

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