President Muhammadu Buhari’s service chiefs have reportedly revised a military provision that will now ensure that they walk away with juicy retirement benefits.
Under the new provision, the Chief of the Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai and other military chiefs, have reportedly been awarded four Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs), four Peugeot cars, among other juicy retirement benefits.
This, according to Sahara Reporters, are according to the Harmonised Terms and Conditions of Service for Officers (HTACOS).
The new HTACOS 2017 reportedly stipulates that the military chiefs will get security staff of over 40 soldiers as well as domestic and foreign medical cover.
The document reportedly shows that the brand new SUVs to be given to Buratai; the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen Abayomi Olonisakin; the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas; and the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, will be replaced every four years at the military’s expense.
Buhari appointed the defence chiefs on July 13, 2015, and despite the worsening insecurity in the country, the president has retained the service chiefs generally perceived by Nigerians to have run out of ideas.
The country has been in the grip of the Boko Haram terrorists in the North-East and banditry in the North-West, with the National Assembly, the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) and many notable Nigerians calling for the replacement of the service chiefs.
The current service chiefs, despite their perceived failings, revised the previous 2012 conditions and replaced them with the 2017 HTACOS which now makes them entitled to the juicy retirement benefits.
Section 11 of the HTACOS 2017 reportedly explains how the military will bear the heavy cost of the many retirement benefits lined up for the service chiefs.
The document partly reads:
“Retirement benefits for CDS and service chiefs; the following benefits shall be applicable; one bullet-proof SUV or equivalent vehicle to be maintained by the Service and to be replaced every four years. Two; Peugeot 508 or equivalent backup vehicle; three, retention of all military uniform and accoutrement to be worn for appropriate ceremonies.
“Also, five domestic aides (two service cooks, two stewards and a civilian gardener); an Aide-de-Camp/Security Officer; a Special Assistant of Lieutenant or Captain or equivalents or Personal Assistant; also, a Standard Guard of nine soldiers.
“Three service drivers; one service orderly; escorts (to be provided by appropriate military units/ formation as the need arises; retention of personal firearms (on his demise the personal firearm(s) shall be retrieved by the relevant Service and also; a free medical cover in Nigeria and abroad.”
From the Harmonised Terms and Conditions of Service for Officers, soldiers, airmen and ratings 2012, the military made provision for only Peugeot cars, and some other benefits, but it did not include the bullet-proof SUVs, the standard guard of nine soldiers and the free medical cover in and outside Nigeria.