Army says Boko Haram terrorists don't earn more money than soldiers

The Army says the claim that Boko Haram terrorists earn more than soldiers is a pure lie.

Nigerian troops have been battling the Boko Haram insurgency in the northeast for 10 years [Vanguard]

Dr Sidi Mohammed, a member of the Presidential Committee on the North East Initiative (PCNI), recently claimed that Boko Haram fighters are paid a sum of N1 million ($3000) on a daily basis while soldiers on the war front only earn the paltry sum of N1,000 as daily allowance.

However, in a statement signed by the Acting Director of Army Public Relations, Colonel Sagir Musa, the Army described the claim as a "pure lie and highly irresponsible comment".

The Army also said it is criminal to compare "gallant soldiers" with "rag tag terrorists" as there is no such basis between outlawed murderous criminals and patriotic soldiers of the Armed Forces whose sacrifice cannot be quantified.

The statement read, "Over time, we have been alerting the world that the menace of Boko Haram terrorism is being aided and abetted by sympathisers such as Doctor Sidi Ali Mohammed.

"He must have been associated with the terrorist group beyond what he may want the public to know for having the knowledge of how much a terrorist earns per day to commit atrocities against fellow Nigerians and other innocent people including women and children. 

"His statement could be part of the deliberate attempt to demoralise the patriotic soldiers serving their fatherland so that the terrorists will take advantage of it.

"It is also a way of swaying the gullible youths to believe the lies of Boko Haram terrorists as being peddled by him."

The Army disclosed that necessary steps are being followed to formally report Dr Mohammed to the appropriate authorities "to further substantiate these unfounded allegations". 

The Army called on Nigerians to ignore the claim and promised that it remains resolute and focused in the fight against terrorism and insurgency and will not be distracted by propaganda.

Since the group's insurgency escalated in 2009, Boko Haram has killed around 30,000 people and displaced millions in the northeast region, with its operations also extending to border countries like Cameroon, Chad and Niger.

Even though the powers of the Abubakar Shekau-led main faction of Boko Haram has been on the wane in the past couple of years, another faction, the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), has grown in influence and carried out several savage attacks on military bases last year.

While speaking at the presentation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Sub-Sahara Africa's Economic Outlook Report in Abuja on Monday, April 29, 2019, Dr Mohammed said ending the Boko Haram insurgency would require a lot of thinking outside the box because the conventional ways of fighting a warfare cannot work.

He said the failure of governance must be fixed so that Boko Haram can no longer exploit the vacuum created most especially between communities and their local officials.

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