Some officers of the Nigerian Army have lamented the delay in the processing of the payment of their salaries and allowances for the month of January.
The officers who spoke with SaharaReporters alleged that politicians and Generals in the force have decided to impoverish those in the lower cadre despite having held discussions around increment in salary for officers.
One of the soldiers said the least officer in the Army earns N50, 000 which is about $120. According to him, the low salary range is already very discouraging and even worse that the payment of such is being delayed.
He said: “The Army has not paid any soldier in all parts of Nigeria, January salary. There was an issue of increment of salary some years ago, but up until now, the least person in the Nigerian Army, earns N50, 000, that’s about $120 per month, that’s what the lowest-ranked soldier in the Nigerian Army earns.
“Up till now, nothing like increment of salary, the big men have disorganised the issue of increment of salary till date. We have not heard anything about that. Now, this small one they’re paying, to pay early so we can use it to do something for ourselves, is now a problem. People are complaining, everybody is angry over the salary issue.”
Another aggrieved soldier explained that though there were issues around the increment of salary for soldiers, due to the issue of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel information system (IPPIS), discussions around this also died down.
He claimed that rather than the IPPIS which will allow the government to pay directly into the soldiers’ individual accounts, some of the soldiers get paid via POS transactions which is responsible for the decrease in the amount paid.
The officer further advised his colleagues to be careful and rational in their dealings with civilians, stating that the source of their problems is the greed of politicians and high-ranking officers in the Army.
He said, “For many years now, the issue of IPPIS came up. Instead of that, some of us, we get paid via POS. They wanted to make the payment directly to all soldiers’ accounts but now, it’s still Army that is paying, the issue of IPPIS did not work. Instead of them to even increase the salary, they decreased it.
“Sometimes you’ll see that POS has credited you your salary. Will Mr President say he is not aware of all these? All of them are aware of what they pay us. A soldier went home, his uncle’s wife who is a Senator saw the officer’s salary and was shocked.
“The woman fought for the increment of salary but till today, some soldiers get N50, 000 as salary. Yet, those who are not doing anything for the good of the country are amassing the wealth to themselves.
“That’s why I always say soldiers must be sensible and stop harassing innocent civilians, those who are our problem in this country are politicians, the senior men in the Army, they want us to be impoverished so that everyone can continue to suffer. That’s the issue.”