For a second time in two days, wives of soldiers on Monday protested the deployment of their husbands in areas said to have been captured by Islamic terrorists, Boko Haram.
The protesting women, numbering over 100, caused near pandemonium at the entrance of the 21 Armoured Brigade of the Nigeria Army, Giwa Barracks, in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
They said they would not allow their husbands to be deployed in Damboa and Gwoza, two towns said to have been captured by the insurgents, to fight with weapons said to be inferior to the arms of the terrorists.
The early protest was by wives of soldiers at the Maimalari barrack, within Maiduguri a day earlier.
The women, who did not allow movements into the barracks, insisted that engaging the insurgents with the kind of weapons made available to the soldiers was nothing short of suicide mission.
When journalists visited the barracks on Monday afternoon, the women were seen protesting at the locked gates of the barracks.
“We won’t allow our husbands to be killed,” many of them were heard shouting.
One of the women, who spoke to journalists on condition of anonymity, said that “those that their breadwinners were killed in the course of defending their fatherland were suffering; the government has not done anything for them to alleviate their sufferings.”
“As soldiers, our husbands are supposed to defend their fatherland in the face of both external and internal aggression as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, but that could only be done when they were supplied with modern war equipment and properly motivated as obtained in countries in other parts of the world,” she stated.
The women asked the Federal Government to supply better working equipment in order to wage the war against insurgents, as promised by President Goodluck Jonathan during the fund raising to assist the victims of Boko Haram insurgency by the agency headed by Gen. T Y Danjuma (retd.)
Many highly placed individuals, including the Borno State Governor, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, had complained that the Boko Haram terrorists had sophisticated weapons and better motivated than the Nigerian soldiers, a claim that the military authorities denied.