Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Retired military officers protest non-payment of allowances

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Some retired military officers under the aegis of the Retired Members of Nigerian Armed Forces and the Coalition of Concerned Veterans on Monday staged a protest at the headquarters of the Ministry of Defence, Abuja.

The protesters who defied the early Monday morning heavy downpour in the federal capital lamented the non-payment of their Security Debarment Allowance, SDA, among others.

The aggrieved protesters, including some relatives of the deceased personnel, blocked the access road to the Ship House, the office complex housing the ministry.

The military veterans, accused the Minister of Defence, Maj.-Gen. Bashir Magashi (Retd), of being insensitive to their plight.

Addressing reporters during the protest, the spokesman of the group, Abiodun Durowaiye-Herbert, accused the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magashi, of being insensitive to their plight.

The group, therefore, vowed not to leave the ministry’s entrance until their demands are met.

Mr Herbert said: “We are here alongside our wives and children, and the widows of late military personnel and veterans who died in service, some of whom died fighting Boko Haram terrorists.

“We’ll be sleeping over at this place until the Minister of Defence, Magashi accede to our demands,” he added.

Speaking with Daily Trust, Anna Nanven, a widow of a Corporal who was killed by Boko Haram terrorists in Borno State in 2015, lamented that she had only received one allowance disbursement since her husband’s death.

Mrs Nanven said: “My husband was a young man, a Corporal that was killed by Boko Haram terrorists during an attack on the barracks where he worked.

“I now live with his parents, and I bore five kids, three females and two males, for him until his demise.

“The children are aged 22, 20, 18, 15, and seven years old, and the two eldest, both girls, that are done with High School can’t afford going to University because I can’t afford their school fees.

“I am pleading that the President, the Minister of Defence, and Nigerian citizens come to our aid.

“I and my five children are suffering and living in poverty because I can’t afford to start a business and I have no job.”

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