Featured image of actual mercenaries in Nigeria; image from faceBook
- Millions of $ being paid to foreign fighters while Nigerian military are owed wages, civilian vigilantes are witch hunted
Reuters has just confirmed that the Jonathan-led Nigerian government hired hundreds of South African and Soviet mercenaries at an exorbitant rate of $400 a day to fight Boko Haram as part of his electioneering 6-week war.
NewsRescue had reported in early February that about 100 South African mercenaries chartered by the Jonathan government which had sparked a row between Nigeria and South Africa who were displeased by the development.
The Jonathan government had tried to claim the mercenaries were only in Nigeria to “train” Nigerian soldiers however this claim was refuted by South African and all evidence including a report from yesterday where the first South African mercenary life was lost in Borno.
As an election defeat loomed the Jonathan government desperate to overturn the odds, postponed the elections and embarked on a 6 week billion dollar electioneering war purchasing through a shady businessman, Engineer Arthur Eze, 6 refurbished helicopters through Elbit Israeli company for half a billion dollars, an amount “which could buy 40 new choppers” for Nigeria. The government also invested millions of dollars hiring foreign mercenaries who do not know Nigeria’s terrain, rather than arming and utilizing local civilian vigilantes and hunters for cheaper who had been requesting government’s authorization and support and have shown the ability to defeat Boko Haram and who recently recaptured Mubi and Maiha in Adamawa before the Jonathan government clamped down on them.
Vanguard reports from Reuters: Hundreds of mercenaries from South Africa and the former Soviet Union have reportedly been hired by the Nigerian government to fight alongside the Nigerian troops to rout out Boko Haram terrorists from the North Eastern part of the country. According to Reuters, quoting regional security, defense and diplomatic sources, the mercenaries were being paid about $400 in cash each a day. …
A West African security source and a South African defense source told Reuters that the foreign troops were linked to the bosses of former South African private military firm Executive Outcomes.
Executive Outcomes was best-known for its involvement in Angola’s 1975-2002 civil war and against Revolutionary United Front rebels in an internal conflict in Sierra Leone in 1995. It disbanded in 1998, under pressure from the post-apartheid government in Pretoria to curtail mercenary activities.
The West African security source said several hundred foreigners were involved in running major offensive operations against Boko Haram, and were being paid around $400 a day in cash.
Separately, a South African defense contractor confirmed to Reuters that ex-Executive Outcomes leaders were involved in the deployment, which came after the six-week postponement of elections in mid-February due to the threat from Boko Haram.
One Abuja-based diplomat said the South Africans were backed by soldiers and hardware from the former Soviet Union in an alliance against Boko Haram.
South African mercenary killed
Meanwhile, a South African mercenary was shot and killed by friendly fire during operations against Boko Haram in northeast Nigeria, a military officer and a civilian vigilante said on Thursday.
Foreign Mercenaries Being Used For All Aerial Attacks by Nigeria; Paid Tens of Millions of Dollars
“All the aerial attacks are being done by the white soldiers using Nigerian and hired military aircraft,” he said.
Another officer, who served as a top aide to the commander of a brigade in Borno state, told VOA there were between 100 and 150 foreign soldiers, mainly South African, working out of Maiduguri and they were flying fighter jets daily out of the Maiduguri airport.
On February 27, a VOA reporter witnessed a convoy of around 30 vehicles— armored personnel carriers, mine sweepers and open-backed troop transport trucks — driving north on the main highway between the capital Abuja and Maiduguri.
The drivers were white and men visible in the backs of the transport trucks were overwhelmingly white. Some of the trucks had what appeared to be Nigerian flags painted on the doors.