The Nigeria-Biafra War veterans, under the umbrella, ‘First Intake Able Voluntary Retired Or Discharged Ten Or More Years In Military Service’ on Tuesday asked the Nigerian government to pay their entitlements before they all died in poverty.
The National Coordinator of the group, Pa Babawande Philips, who stated this at a press conference in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, said many of their members had died of poverty recently.
Babawande said since the government discharged them about 44 years ago, its members have not received their entitlements.
According to him, the Nigerian government has compensated the Biafran soldiers who fought against them while fighters, mainly from the North, South-West and South-South, who fought for Nigeria, are struggling to survive.
The war veterans who insisted that they worked directly under the supervision of Muhammadu Buhari during the civil war, urged the president to wade into the matter and ensure they are enlisted in the Nigerian Military Pensions Board.
Babawande said, “Gentlemen, we are suffering. Many of us who defended Nigeria nation during the civil war cannot boast of a house. We laid out lives to defend Nigeria but see how they are paying us back. We have all the documents which qualify us to be on the pensions board. If all our people died in poverty, God won’t forgive Nigerian leaders.
“We have done many biometric screenings but not fruitful. Are they waiting until we all die? At this age, the federal government is sending us up and down. I was in Abuja last month. But as we speak, we are at a crossroads. We are staging a protest to register our displeasure over the inability of the federal government to give us our entitlements. The protest is slated for the 11th of this month and we want every one of you to come around for coverage.”