By Seun Akioye
The headquarters of the 81 Division Nigerian Army (NA) says there is no truth in the report that a soldier attached to the 35 Artillery Brigade terminated his life due to non-payment of Ration Cash Allowance (RCA).
In a statement issued by Lieutenant Colonel Olabisi Ayeni, the Acting Deputy Director, Army Public Relations, the report was intended to malign the image of the Division and that of the Nigerian Army by mischief makers desperate to profit from a sad incident.
Ayeni said: “For the sake of posterity, it needs be mentioned that the late soldier was deployed at the Brigade Standby Force on Monday 15 January 24 alongside his colleagues for daily cantonment duty and they were adequately fed in line with NA’s standard for troops’ on duties.
“However, investigation into the immediate cause of the incident, indicated that the deceased soldier reportedly handled his personal weapon negligently and misfired, which resulted to his death. His colleagues who heard the sound of gunshot had rushed to the scene of the incident, only to find the soldier in the pool of his blood with gunshot wounds on the head.
“Further investigation has since commenced to unravel the circumstances and possible remote cause of the unfortunate incident, while the remains of the soldier has been evacuated and deposited at the Federal Medical Centre Abeokuta.”
Ayeni also said the family of the deceased has been informed of the unfortunate incident.
“It is however, pertinent to reiterate that the Division is committed to providing necessary welfare required to boost the morale of troops under command in line with the Chief of Army Staff Command Philosophy. Therefore, the Division will not under any guise take the welfare of its troops lightly as wrongly insinuated,” he added.