Corruption Lingers In Nigerian Army As Soldiers In Zamfara Lament Non-Payment Of December Allowance, Three Meals Reduced To One Daily
The circumstance has forced the soldiers to supplement their food with their own money.
Soldiers of Operation Hadarin Daji, Team 3, Magami of the Nigerian Army deployed to fight terrorists in Zamfara State in the country’s North-West region have lamented non-payment of their December allowance and a drastic reduction in their meals and beverages.
SaharaReporters learnt that the soldiers who are currently at the war front are being fed only once daily as opposed to the normal three square meals per day. The circumstance has forced the soldiers to supplement their food with their own money.
One of the affected personnel told SaharaReporters, “Here at Zamfara, they never pay us last year December allowance and then, they skip our meal every day and we are supposed to be fed 3 times a day. Like today now, it’s only one meal. It is our salary we use to feed ourselves.”
The soldier went on to say that the quantity and quality of their beverages had also been lowered. He stated that before, each soldier was “entitled to 10 sachets of Bournvita and 10 sachets of Peak Milk for two weeks, but that this had now been lowered to zero Bournvita and six sachets of Peak Milk.”
“And our provision has also been shortened. Usually, they give us 10 sachet of tea and 10 sachet of powder milk for two weeks but now it has been shortened to no sachet of tea and the powder milk has been shortened to 6,” another soldier added.
In September 2023, SaharaReporters also reported how some soldiers of 154 Taskforce Battalion deployed to fight terrorists in the Northeast region lamented that despite an increment of money earmarked for their feeding allowance, they were being fed poorly cooked rice.
One of the affected soldiers had told SaharaReporters that the battalion in Ngamdu under the command of Lt. Col. Buba gave them only bread and tea for breakfast on Mondays and Thursdays, rice for dinner, white rice and stew for Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays “but concussion rice for the remaining weekdays.”
They shared several photographs showing the food they were served in their base and lamented the non-payment of their allowances.
Reacting to the reports, the army had ordered that an investigation should be carried out immediately into the soldiers’ claim, noting that the welfare of troops would a premium place amongst other important schemes and considerations.
The statement had read, “The attention of the Nigerian Army (NA) has been drawn to a recent claim of poor feeding of troops at the frontline in the North East Theatre of operations.
“It is crucial to point out to the general public that the welfare of troops under the present leadership of the NA takes a premium place amongst other important schemes and considerations as it is one of the vital pillars of the COAS Command Philosophy which is to provide ‘Sound Administration’ in order to ensure a highly motivated force.
“The NA therefore takes these allegations very seriously and the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja has directed immediate investigation into the complaints to ascertain its veracity and unravel the circumstances.”