President Muhammadu Buhari says he is “looking into” the poor welfare of soldiers fighting Boko Haram insurgents in the north-east.
The president’s comment comes in the wake of an investigation on how soldiers beg “enemies” for food and wear slippers to the battlefield.
In his Independence Day speech, Buhari said he remains committed to the well-being of soldiers and other security operatives in the frontline.
He said: “I want at this point to pay tribute to the men and women of our armed forces, the police and other security and law enforcement agencies, who have been working under the most difficult conditions to keep the country safe. In the process, many have made the supreme sacrifice.
“As their commander-in-chief, I assure these our gallant men and women that I will continue to empower them by deepening their professionalism and providing all the necessary force multipliers and enablers required for them to prevail on the field.
“I am looking into all reported cases of inadequacies in relation to their entitlements, their welfare and those of their families.”
Following the report by thecable, the defense headquarters had said soldiers on the frontline in the war against insurgency should not expect to live in luxurious conditions.
In his Democracy Day speech, the president also touched on the recurring conflict between herders and farmers, saying the issue is being addressed.
“The age-long conflict between herders and farmers that was being exploited by those seeking to plant the seeds of discord and disunity amongst our people, is being addressed decisively,” he said.
“In this context I must warn that the perpetrators of murder and general mayhem in the name of defending or protecting herders or farmers will face the full wrath of the law.”
On the economy, the president said his government is relying less on oil and heavily diversifying.
“We are diversifying away from reliance on oil to increased manufacturing capacity, solid minerals development, and agriculture,” he said.
He added that “efforts are on course in the Niger Delta to clean up polluted lands, restore hopes of the youths in the region and re-establish livelihoods, and strengthen their capacity to guarantee for themselves and for our country a brighter future”.
The president also noted that his government is fighting corruption and recovering looted funds.
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