Family seeks assistance for deceased soldier’s entitlement
Master Marcu James, the next of kin to Army Corporal Moses James, who died in active service on July 30, 2002, while serving in the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone, has called on President Bola Tinubu to ensure the payment of the deceased’s entitlement.
James alleged that his effort to remind the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. General Taoreed Lagbaja, of the deceased’s entitlement has been rebuffed.
According to his solicitor, Bade Aina, a letter of reminder, he sent to the COAS on July 17, through a courier service, was delivered, and read thoroughly, but was thrown back at the courier man.
“During the time of General Ibrahim Attahiru as COAS, he listened to us. During the time of Major- General Yahaya as COAS, he listened to us. But now, Lt. Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, does not want to see us.
They collected the sealed letter from the courier man, read it and returned it back to the courier man,” the solicitor alleged.
In the said letter to the COAS, after congratulating him on his well-deserved appointment with prayers, the law firm deemed not expedient to remind General Lagbaja on behalf of its client (Marcus James) that since the demise of Corporal Moses James 20 years ago, he has not been paid his allowances despite all efforts and pleadings to successive Chiefs of Army Staff.
“We cannot forget in a hurry the cooperation of Lt- General Ibrahim Attahiru to us. He made frantic efforts to pay the allowances during his short period.
“He could not pay due to the cold hands of death that took him away in the plane crash of May 21, 2021. We love him but God loves him more. May his gentle soul and the souls of others in the plane crash rest in perfect peace with the Almighty God (Amen),” he added.
According to Aina, “Thereafter, all we received was a letter by the succeeding administrations, but no allowances paid. At a time, our hopes were raised by former administrations and his data were gathered by past administration to know how much to pay to our client, which calmed us down after our steps to approach the court on the matter.
“But all we saw was total silence from them again and then the administration did nothing to alleviate the sufferings of our client even till now.”
Aina, therefore, appealed to President Tinubu, the Chief of Defence Staff, General Christopher Musa, and other well-meaning Nigerians to come to the aid of the deceased’s family who are experiencing harrowing difficulty because of non-payment of the said allowances.
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