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A leaked video has shown the Nigerian soldiers speaking on why they went on rampage in Sambisa
– The soldiers complained of poor treatment and lack of food
According to Premium Times, Nigerian soldiers who revolted against their superior officers inside the dreaded Sambisa forest in December were protesting the poor treatment meted out on them by military authorities.
News broke on December 16, 2016, that there was complete breakdown of order and discipline at the 21 Brigade of the Nigerian Army with soldiers deployed to rout Boko Haram from the dreaded Sambisa forest in Borno state turning against their officers and firing gunshots in all directions.
People familiar with the matter said the troops complained of mistreatment and then began to shoot indiscriminately, threatening to kill any officer who stands on their way.
The soldiers had turned against their superior officers, protesting and shooting indiscriminately.
But soon after this news broke, the army denied that the soldiers ever revolted against their superior officers.
Victor Ezegwu, the General Officer Commanding of the Nigerian Army 7 Divison said: “I want to assure that nothing like mutiny happened in Bama. Nothing happened.”
He told reporters in Maiduguri:“I just came back from Bama and nothing like that happened.”
However, a video footage recorded just after the angry soldiers were pacified which not only showed that the revolt actually occurred but also revealed the reasons for the soldiers’ actions has been leaked.
In the footage, the soldiers said they were poorly fed, lacked water to bath, were overworked and without basic equipment and vehicles for transportation.
The footage shows a superior officer, holding a swagger stick and wearing a bulletproof vest, with his back to the recording device. He was addressing a group of soldiers.
The unidentified officer asked for “any witness” of the revolt to come forward and speak on the reason for the disturbance.
Apparently, to encourage the soldiers to speak out, he told the soldiers that he understood their frustration and pain.
The officer said: “For you now, I know your problem. I know your feeling. For the fact that you have been here and you have been on this. For that alone, it is stressful. Even me, I’m stressed.
“So you cannot now because of that anger, you will not be able to articulate your problem. But I will give you the opportunity. Just calm down and let me know the major problem.”
One of the soldiers then stood up to speak on the unfavourable conditions troops fighting the insurgents were subjected to.
He said soldiers were sent for operations without knowing when their tour of duty was supposed to end and they usually had to protest before they were allowed to go home.
The officer who spoke said: “Let me just tell you the truth. Each time when we want to go for operation they will not tell us how long we are going to stay for the operation. They will keep deceiving us, on almost all the occasions we end up fighting before we leave the operation.”
Perhaps the most embarrassing aspect of the soldier’s complaint was on how they were fed.
One of them, who was encouraged by the others said: “Now we are advancing, there is no food to eat. Every day, they give us two Indomie (sachets of instant noodles); that is what we eat. How would you survive with two Indomie?
“And there is no water. As I speak to you this the eighth day that I have not taken my bath, no water to drink, nothing.”
He also commented on the poor provision made to transport soldiers from the front, but his voice was drowned by the shouts and clapping from other soldiers.
“We were told we are going to go and hit Camp Zero, that after hitting Camp Zero that will be all for us. We went up to Chibiya and spent about six days and seven days and after everything we are supposed to go to Camp Zero and all our vehicles and equipment have developed faults.
“The army is supposed to come and take us away from that place, fix those vehicles and we are ready to fight; because as I speak to you 80 per cent of the vehicles are not good.”
The soldiers have since chased out Boko Haram from Sambisa forest in a move commended by Nigerians including President Muhammadu Buhari. The Army has said the forest will now be used as a military training ground.
Meanwhile, the Army announced on Tuesday, January 3, that 800 soldiers have been deployed to Darfur for peacekeeping.
Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai revealed this at the Nigerian Army Peace Keeping Centre during the graduation of 755 soldiers and 45 officers that participated in the pre-deployment training in Jaji, Kaduna state.
Watch the leaked video below:
Apart from being a principal staff officer to Gen Buhari in the 1970s, Sam Momah was also a former minister of Science and Technology
– Momah said the four things must be immediately tackled by President Buhari if his government must continue to earn respect
A retired Army General and former minister of Science and Technology, Sam Momah, says there are five things President Muhammadu Buhari must immediately tackle in 2017 if his government must continue to be in touch with Nigerians.
The five things that Momah said would endear Buhari’s government to Nigerians include:
1. Making a monthly broadcast,
2. Visiting states more often,
3. Setting up a national conference (that could also assist in the reduction of the size of the National Assembly and number of local government areas in the country),
4. Using recovered looted money to pay for low-cost housing,
Daily Trust reports that Momah, a principal staff officer to Gen Buhari in the 1970s, said this in his just-released book: ‘Nigeria’s Break Up: Grave Consequences & Solutions’.
“A monthly broadcast by the president is important because there is a communication gap,” he said in the book.
The report also said Momah, while speaking about the book in Abuja, added: “There is a need for a monthly broadcast as the people will like to hear from him (Buhari) because they so rely on him; they believe he has the magic wand. So, whatever word he utters is like gold to Nigerians.”
According to him, frequent visits to states would allow President Buhari to know what is on the ground and “it will energise the change mantra. It is stressful, but he’s visiting outside Nigeria.
“The people want to see their president. The governors alone cannot do it; some of them might not even share his ideas. But, by visiting their states, he can push them to work and carry out his ideals.”
Concerning the much-talked about national conference for Nigeria, Momah said the president could look at the recommendations from the past ones and pick relevant things to do.
“He doesn’t have to take verbatim what (former President Goodluck) Jonathan was given, but he can modify them and move on,” said Momah while suggested that restructuring of Nigeria should include reducing the size of the National Assembly and the number of local government areas.
He described these two as avenues for squandering public money.
The report further quoted Momah as advising the president to set up an ethical reorientation system, where Nigerians can be asked what and how they want to do whatever it is they want to do.
Governor Fayose has described the payment of N5000 to poor people as a propaganda
– The Ekiti governor claimed his people have not received any payment from the federal government
– He said he pays N10000 to poor people in his state
Governor Ayodele Fayose has challenged President Muhammadu Buhari to publish the names of those who have received the N5000 stipend the federal government claimed it has paid.
The federal government announced that it has started disbursing the N5000 stipend which was promised to poor Nigerians by President Buhari.
One million most vulnerable Nigerians will be rewarded with a N5,000 monthly stipend through the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) of its Social Investment Programmes (SIP).
The Tribune reports that, the presidency announced that the government has begun the payment.
Laolu Akande, the Senior Special Assistant on Media and publicity to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo disclosed that the implementation of the programme was part of the Muhammadu Buhari administration’s determined efforts to touch the lives of Nigerians positively.
The Punch however reports that that Governor Fayose challenged the president to make public names of those who have received as Ekiti people have not received anything yet.
Fayose claimed only All Progressives Congress (APC) states will agree that they have received payment.
“A blind man will say it is when it gets into my mouth that I will say you are feeding me, not promises.”
He said the ruling party “should come to the reality that Nigerians are hungry and also angry and that Nigerians are no longer interested in empty promises.”
Fayose accused the APC of focusing on 2019 rather than making the country better and said the project was a World Bank own with payment made since 2016.
The governor said he was already paying poor people N10000 in Ekiti without delay.
“Federal government’s N5,000 payment to the poor was designed in a way that the state governors are also involved because they are to clear and present prospective beneficiaries before payments are made.”
The Ugandan Police have disrupted a wedding ceremony between a 14-year-old girl and a 22-year-old man.
Daily Monitor reports that the girl who’s a secondary school dropout, is currently four months pregnant. Her parents, Abdu Kalimu Ngobi and Faridah Kagoya were said to have agreed to marry off their daughter to the man, Talyaka Swaliki after collecting Shs 200, 000 and a goat as bride price.
The police however arrived after the traditional wedding ceremony was over and the groom was about taking his ‘new bride’ home. All the guest scampered for safety to avoid being arrested, including relatives.
Surprisingly, the bride denied she was 15 years of age and she claimed to be 18-year-old. She said: “I am not young and I don’t know why police disrupted our function. I love my husband and. I asked my parents’ permission to get married.”
The girl’s parents also insisted that the daughter was 18 years and had accepted to marry her off at her own request. “She dropped out of school and told us that she wanted to get married to the man who was responsible for her pregnancy and as a Muslim, I had no objection,” her father, Mr Ngobi said.
The groom also said he had been in relationship with the supposed underage girl for two years.
“Her parents asked for a bride price of Shs 200,000, a goat and two gomesi which I paid. They didn’t tell me that she was young,” said the groom.
Although a group of residents later stormed the Police station demanding for the suspects to be released, the police have confirmed that the parents are to be charged with marrying off an underage girl while the groom is to be charged with defilement.
Editor’s note: Alkaji Atiku Abubakar, former vice president of the country, has been touted as one of the possible candidates for the 2019 presidential election even though he has not made any public declaration.
Naij.com guest contributor, Sule Samuel in his New Year message to Atiku tips him for 2019 presidency but wanrs him to be careful of the people around.
The man for 2019
Sir, You are our choice for president in 2019 but you have to be careful of the Historians; your name, your roots, your flops they know, so they laugh, laugh and laugh when you claimed you are a king. Be careful of the Archaeologists; they are experienced, they have tested failures, they have seen the smart failed so they sniff, sniff and sniff when you aim for the trophy.
Your task is to create a new legacy for Nigeria but you must realize that you cannot achieve this by becoming a friend to all but by becoming an enemy to some. You are on errand, your voice must be louder than the voice of the crowd. You are not going to make a road round a mountain but through the mountain so its going to be tough. Our collective hope is that 10, 20, 30 years from now, we will all look back and said we made the right choice the day we chose you.
Some of our past leaders have fame, we want you to stand out. Some of our past leaders attract crowd, we want you to affect many. Some of our past leaders were sold out, we want you to spread. We want you to create songs from storms, carve stars from nights and paint mountains in shadows.
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Our duty as your supporters is to ask Nigerians to reject the notion that there are forces we can’t control. Our problems are man-made and can also be solved by man. We will make them put away pessimism, cynicism and make them understand that progress is possible with Atiku Abubakar. Progress is not inevitable, it requires struggle, discipline and faith.
Keep your fingers crossed, and get ready for a world class performance in Ask Rock Villa in 2019. Have a wonderful New Year celebration.