An uproar has emerged from the Nigerian Army over alleged corrupt practices and misappropriation by the Chief of Army Staff, General Faruk Yahaya.

With a protest already in the offing and scheduled to hold in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, soldiers and officers of the Force will look to voice out their dismay over unpaid emoluments, poor working conditions, ethnic and religious favouritism.

Sources also claim that soldiers prosecuting the war against insurgency; particularly in north-eastern Nigeria, will speak out against the leadership of General Yahaya during the one-day protest. These soldiers opine that the Force is currently in ‘rot’, due to dysfunctional welfarism, thereby affecting the performance of the Army.

A Colonel of the Nigerian Army who pleaded anonymity echoed the situation within the camp to a media outlet.

‘General Yahaya has done what no other Army Chief has done in the history of the Nigerian Army. He has divided the Nigerian Army along religious and ethnic lines. You are not considered an officer if you do not share a certain faith or religion, which has affected operational efficiency numerous times.

‘Let me tell you this, the present leadership crop of the Nigerian Army is busy making retirement plans. Contracts are shared amongst themselves, monies meant for troops on the battlefront are diverted to private pockets, allowances of soldiers are not paid, and it is generally an atmosphere of delusion in the army as we speak,’ he said.

According to another source from the Army, inherent authorities have directed all Divisions and Commands to withdraw passes granted to officers and soldiers; ordering those already permitted to return to their operation bases with immediate effect.

‘All commands of the Nigerian Army have been directed to suspend the issuance of a travel pass to officers and soldiers. It was a terse statement from the Army Headquarters some days ago, with a warning to ensure strict compliance,’ the source revealed.

An unnamed soldier currently in an operation base in the north-west, spoke on the issue of the recent increase in requests for passes. According to him, the poor conditions of operation has moved even more soldiers to seek for alternative bases and deployment.

‘Our allowances are unpaid; we don’t have food or water. Maybe our “Ogas” in Abuja want us to perform magic. We have not experienced such in the history of the Nigerian Army. Even the police and other paramilitary services are doing better than us. All of this started under General Faruk Yahaya.

‘This is a shame for the Nigerian Army. Other people have been Chief of Army Staff before him. Was this how he was treated? Our prayer is for President Buhari to sack him immediately; else there will be problems.

‘The President must do something urgently. I can tell you that there is a rumble in the barracks. The soldiers are not happy. The suffering is too much, and we are now a laughing stock in the Armed Forces,’ he said.

Recall that a similar uproar occured in March, when the Police Force stated they would embark on a warning strike to protest issues similar to that suffered by many officers in the Nigerian Army.

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