The Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi (rtd) has advised the leadership of the Coalition of Concerned Veterans against staging protests to press home their demands for payments of Security Debarment Allowance (SDA) and other allowances.
General Magashi stated this while addressing the Leadership of the Coalition of Concerned Veterans at a meeting in the Ministry of Defence Headquarters, Ship House Abuja.
He said protest is not the best option and the solution to their grievances with the government especially at this period when the mood of the nation does not call for such action.
While assuring them of President Muhammadu Buhari’s continuous commitment towards mitigating their plights, he said the recommendations by the various Committees he set up to look into their demands have undergone stages for implementation.
The Defence Minister who is also a member of the retired Veteran Generals warned against fueling chaotic situations capable of sending wrong signals to the International Communities and called for enduring patience as the agitations are not beyond amicable resolutions.
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The Team Leader of the Coalition of Concerned Veterans, Retired Commodore MF. Daniel had itemised the agitations of members that led to the January 5th peaceful protest in Abuja and other parts if the country to include non payment of the arrears of Minimum wage and the Security Debarment Allowance (SDA).
Other demands according to retired Commodore Daniel include Salary disparities and non capturing of some Civil War Veterans on the pay roll.
While justifying the recent protest against the backdrop of the death of some members to the lack of access to medications and affordability to pick up medical bills, he appealed to the government to expedite action to pay up the outstanding arrears.
The Defence Minister also accommodated the views of the Convener of the protest Commander Abiodun Durowaiye who is the Spokesperson for the Coalition of the Concerned Veterans and Damien Roy Okhdevbie.
The Chairman Military Pensions Board, Rear Admiral Saburi Abayomi Lawal explained the Presidential directive regarding the Implementation of the Consequential Adjustment Payments, while the Director Medical office of the Permanent Secretary Olajide Johnson and Acting Director, Ashigye Willie John explained technical procedures and administrative processes to be followed in implementing the recommendations of the Committees on SDA and the reform.