Nigerian soldiers inspect foodstuff on a Chinese-built SINOTRUK lorry at Jaji, preparatory to the deparure of Nigerian AFISMA troops to Mali

(Photo Credit: DAILY MAIL)

14 February, 2013

The Headquarters of the Nigerian contingent in AFISMA was last week visited by some community leaders in Mali.

“The first visit was on the February 7 by the Civil Administrator and Governor of Koulukoro, Mali, Mr Allayey Tessouguend accompanied by Mayor of Banamba, Mr Boubakar Bagayoko with some Malian senior military officers. On February 11, the contingent was also visited by the Mayor of Touba town, Mallam Amara Nega Sylla who was accompanied by the Sub-Prefect of Touba town, Mr Abdulahi Dicko and the Mayor of Banamba,Boubakar Bagayoko along with several Malian military and gendarmerie officers.

“To underscore their appreciation and in the spirit of hospitality which the Malian people are known for, the community leaders donated cows and some food items during their visits,” he said.


About beegeagle

BEEG EAGLE -perspectives of an opinionated Nigerian male with a keen interest in Geopolitics, Defence and Strategic Studies


  1. beegeagle says:

    Okay, there you have it. Compare this to the tissue of lies published yesterday by PREMIUM TIMES.

    LOOK at the photo above. As of the time when Premium Times reportedly wrote their curious piece, there was a company of troops in Mali. Even if every three of them were Hungry Horace, Greedy Greg and Voracious Victor, HOW can 168 men have eaten up a looryload of food in three weeks, even eating three bags of rice, two bags of beans and two sacks of garri every week?

    Did they not say that the troops are all in Bamako, even after we have sourced photos direct from the front and published same? Well, Banamba is a town in Koulikoro region. That is why the Mayor of Banamba and Governor of Koulikoro have visited the Nigerian troops and not the Mayor of Bamako.

    Shame on Premium Times. We shall continue to expose all of them and their insidious agenda. I do hope that the SSS read this as sedition – wilfull peddling of misinformation with a view to causing disaffection among troops. Was it not similar reports which led to a mutiny and then a coup in Mali last year? The SSS need to make judicial scapegoats of Premium Times so that this free for all media campaign of calumny against Nigerians can be forced into terminal decline.

    • eyimola says:

      Dude. I saw that story yesterday and was shocked. How in the world does this get published? Is Premium Times the same newspaper as Daily Times of the past?

    • jimmy says:

      Hungry Horace, Greedy Greg , and Voracious Victor L.O.L. There some people (Nigerians and Foreigners) included no matter the good news will sink into a depression or will remain silent, the only time they get happy is when they can gleefully report BAD NEWS.
      It is a shame really we have to show pictures of Nigerians unloading foodstuff , it really doesn’t matter anymore because people like these when confronted with the truth just tend to runaway.
      We have pictures of Nigerian special forces in MALI, pictures Nigerian soldiers coming out of Nigeria owned c130, G222 , ALPHA JETS it will never be enough FOR SOME OF THESE FOOLS .One of these reporters ( name withheld because I do not want to give her anymore credit ) went so far as to say the Malians were afraid of the Nigerians stealing their meager resources apparently they were so afraid they welcomed them as brothers and sisters.
      The not so surprising thing is after they write all these articles which tend to be false not a single one tends to do the honorable thing and write a recantation ” that based on the facts presented on the ground the information previously stated was incorrect”
      This is where the NA, NAF, NN must learn to do a better job ( and I give them a lot of credit) this year the p.r . departments and the senior officers commanding have been a lot more pro active than in the past
      So guys let just keep up the good work and ignore the trash .

  2. peccavi says:

    Bad belle. I’m guessing these are the same idiots who were praying Mali would beat Naija in AFCON because of the preponderance of one tribe. Yet to put them to shame it was a northerner who scored the final goal and the game maker was an easterner who grew up in the north and lost his parents to zealots.
    Shameless indivdivuals

  3. beegeagle says:

    Not at all, my Commander. Premium Times are a new age online media who have decided to constitute themselves into national security nuisance. “Daily Times” exist and are not in on this orgy of recklessness.

    How does one, in good conscience, sit down and make it up as they go along – just because they feel the need malign the character of a particular regime? It is incredible really.

    Honestly,I believe that there are charges to pressed here so that these guys step back from folly once and for all. With a riotous army here in our West Africa (try Guinea Bissau or Mali), this report could have led to a mutiny by soldiers trying to evade hunger at the frontlines. Our journalists have to be taught to be professionally driven.

    The same people, for the sake of their readership, would not be bothered to send a reporter to Mali but would be very comfortable sitting in a newsroom and mismatching events?

  4. beegeagle says:

    I mean, this is freestyling of the most perilous kind..given our political history as a nation.

    The other girl sat somewhere and made a banner headline of “Nigerian Air Force have only one aircraft”, whereas what she heard was that only one of an array of three Dornier Do-228 planes at ONE facility – 301 FTS Kaduna is flying? What manner of evil reportage is that, weeks after we saw two A-Jet, a Mi-35, G222 and a C130 head out to Niger and Mali?

    Okay, another group sit inside a radio studio and begin to whip their audience into a frenzy on account of vaccination and then those killers at Boko Haram find soft landing from which to execute nine females doing the work of God by way of immunisation.

    Oh come on..this media-driven nonsense has got to be fought to a standstill and I have already decoded the script and commenced my own battle from here. This is madness of an intolerable kind.

    • Obix says:

      I feel you, beags! One should not wait for the government agencies to reply to such stupid reports. We as citizens of this nation should not keep mum! I remember when recently the Leadership newspaper republished Afua Hirsch’s report on the Nigerian army as breaking news, i promptly blasted them with my comments on their website. The fools removed my comment and blocked me . But i moved the battle to their Facebook page and gave them a piece of my mind!
      Let’s remember this quote “The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing” -Edmund Burke .

  5. beegeagle says:

    Okay,the Malians themselves called it a gesture of welcome. PREMIUM TIMES LIED and even the homers have CLEARLY explained what this gesture was intended to be. Peccavi said so, I said so, Obix dismissed the report. DHQ told the truth


    (Translated from French)


    Nigerian troops of the authorities rural commune Duguwolonwila and circle Banamba offered to soldiers Nigerian contingent of 2 tonnes of rice and 1 ox valued at 960,000 FCFA to wish them welcome in the circle Banamba.

    The official presentation of the donation took place Monday at the headquarters of the troops presence of the prefect circle Banamba, Boubacar Bagayoko, and the sub-prefect of Touba,Abdoulaye Dicko, as well as Mayor of Touba, Amara Sylla, and many political and administrative circle and common Duguwolonwila.

    Mayor Duguwolonwila, Amara Sylla,
    recalled the country’s tradition of
    granting foreigners all the honors they
    deserve. He prayed to the Almighty
    these troops that fight enemies alongside our forces out victorious in this battle for freedom and human dignity.

    In return, Major Alhassane Commander of the Nigerian contingent parked Banamba, said he was very affected by the visit of the authorities Touba and the local circle Banamba gesture which goes to the heart of his troops. He promised to report this mark of solidarity with his hierarchy.

    The sub-prefect of Touba invited all
    Malian sacred union and welcomed the
    which brings us a quota testimony both fraternity and sacrifice for Mali in crisis

    A. M Traore

    • beegeagle says:

      Compare this transcribed report direct from Mali and see the names and officials mentioned by DHQ

      ” Mayor of Banamba, Mr Boubakar Bagayoko, Mayor of Touba town, Mallam Amara Nega Sylla,Sub- Prefect of Touba town, Mr Abdulahi Dicko”

      Then, Premium Times go from “he said, you said, they said, one unnamed source”. Pathetic folk.

  6. beegeagle says:

    As you can see, it was clearly stated to be a traditional Malian gesture of solidarity and welcome. That exploded the first lie by Premium Times.

    Secondly, the report explicitly states that the contingent of Nigerian troops are at Banamba. Premium Times claimed from Kaduna that they are all at Bamako. Second lie.

    Case closed. Those who should know, know without having to belabour the point. Now they can go back to being exclusive recipients of Boko Haram communique

  7. doziex says:

    This is high treason. Maligning the image and perhaps the moral of your own country’s troops with lies ?

    I hope lightening strikes there offices twice, and burns that shit hole to the ground. Bastards.

    However, this is the reason why we have been imploring the nigerian armed forces to be PROACTIVE with telling their story.

    An armed forces chanel could be run out of the NDA. With full cooperation by the govt owned NTA.
    Let the young officers do their thing, please stop stifling them with old doctrine/mentality.

    Packages should be filmed, then distributed to favorable out lets and of course YOU TUBE.

    Finally, because NA’s sometimes abysimal record in the welfare of their own troops, this image of callous incompetence hangs over the institution. Therefore, NA and govt officials should be proactive in showing to all, that the case is now different.

  8. Acting Major Benbella says:

    There must have been a need for food for the Malians to provide them with free food. It makes sense that they will be offered what they lack. How many times did the Malians provide food to the French forces? Or the Afghanis to the Americans. Something is amiss here and we should learn to read between the lines. Its the same way some host governors buy vehicles for the Nigerian police because they lack vehicles. We should learn to pull our own weight no matter the cost. Now, the Nigerian army needs food donation from poor Malians? Give us some freaking break and stop dragging the country’s name and reputation through the mud. Wait till the Guardian and Ms Afua get their hand on this and imagine what they will make of it. We must learn to pay our way and stop depending on donations or begging.

    • johnbest1 says:

      Acting major benbella,even in nigeria troops are given gifts of food by well meaning nigerians as a sign of thanks for all you’ve done,my father gives them gifts of food and money from time to time in warri so whats so bad about the people of mali thanking the nigerian contingent for coming to their country to sacrifice themselves for the malians??
      Please do not conclude before getting to the bottom of things,how do you expect the french to carry bags of rice to the war front and fight??or did you hear anywhere that they were offered food stuffs and didnt accept,and also the americans did recieve foodstuffs from the afghans until they started suicide bombings.

  9. Acting Major Benbella says:

    Where is the treason? Why does your country need poor municipalities to donate food to its contigents there. Soon, if care is not taking there will be reports as they were in Sierra Leone and Liberia of Nigeria soldiers stealing and looting. We should carry ourselves with dignity. It is our failure to do so that invites all sorts of insults and disrespect from other African countries.

    • peccavi says:

      I don’t think that was the case here. Its a courtesy visit with foodstuffs the same way you carry gifts to a senior person or whatever its just hospitality I guess

      • Acting Major Benbella says:

        You may be right although I believe that such gesture is unnecessary and should be discouraged. As you know, perception is as important as facts in presentation. Our presentation is and should remain so, the defeat of the cabal of terrorists in Mali and helping that besieged country reclaim its territories. To do that it is required that we not even by accident impose additional burden on the people. People are carefully monitoring our involvement in Mali and forming perceptions in the process. For example, in a BBC interview two or three days ago, the Ugandan president could not hide his admitted shame to see France play such a leading role in Mali instead of African countries especially countries in the subregion. When asked about the foreign help Uganda is receiving for its intervention in Somalia, he acknowledged the help but said it is not the same thing as the role France is playing in Mali. The Ghanian president in a follow up rebuttal largely agreed with the view expressed earlier but said that the inability of African forces to play a lead role in Mali is due to the lack of investments in their military by African countries.

        Now, this issue of food donation can be interpreted in more than one way. It may as you have done be interpreted as a customary African custom. It can also be interpreted as an imposition on the poor, native population. There is also the possibility that it can be interpreted especially by those persons paid to find connections in order to form a complete picture as a deficiency in our logistics and our preparation. This type of perception is more acute especially in the wake of the Premium Times report that our deployed soldiers are pan handling for food. A similar food shortage was said to have attended Nigeria’s deployment to Bakassi, at least in the initial months of deployment. I had hoped that we have fixed that problem.

    • jimmy says:

      OGA ACTING Major Benbella much respect for your comments
      During the AFGHAN WAR , OGA BENBELLA AMERICAN TROOPS WERE MANDATED to accept FREE GOATS and food from the Afghan tribal elders as a form of hospitality and pictures were shown to prove the point .there is absolutely nothing wrong in accepting the free food it would be considered the height of bad manners for the Nigerian OFFICER IN CHARGE TO REFUSE and could possibly of led to a diplomatic incident.

  10. tim says:

    What if the terrorists were involved along the change of supply of the food stuffs,can’t it be poisoned or laced with something dangerous?

  11. demola says:

    I have WW2 videos of French ladies giving wines and kisses to American soldiers that liberated them. It is called GESTURE. Cows are quite cheap in Mali, my former gateman had a herd back home.

  12. doziex says:

    ” Callous incompetence” when a subsequent embarrasing act or performance, can be traced back to the greed and wickedness of corrupt officials.

    Haba !! nigerian politicians, is there nothing sacred anymore ? pensioners money, somebody go chop am. School teachers salary, somebody will withhold it to generate interest, while the poor bastards suffer.

    While Ecomog soldiers were fighting and dying, funds for their equipment, their welfare, and their logistics, were being diverted.
    Soldiers had to buy panadol, across enemy lines, who inturn used this trade to gather intel on the strength and disposition of nigerian troops.

    One day hopefully, someone will tell us how NA controlled towns of koidu and makeni were overrun in the AFRC/RUF counteroffensive of dec 98, prior to the freetown invasion.

    What was the state of lack amongst NA ecomog troops ?

    This issue of troop provision is not a laughing matter, as it has already led to military debacles, and the deaths of our brave soldiers.

    Why did wounded ecomog veterans, have to stage an embarrasing mutiny in cairo, just so nigerian officials could stop ignoring their plight ?

    So, again I state that it is treasonous, for any nigerian media outlet, to tell outright lies about our deployed soldiers. That is aiding and abeting the enemy.

    However, our media outlets, should be encouraged to pursue and expose the truth of lack,corruption and incompetence within the nigerian armed forces. This is their patriotic duty and in keeping with their ethics in journalism.

    Even in the UN deployment to darfur, the UN had to threaten to withhold renumeration, to get nigerian officials to live up to their responsibilities.

  13. kenee2k says:

    Somewhere in all of this our high brass seem not have grasped the idea that a media strategy is and will remain a component of war.

    They need to be far more proactive in distributing positive images of our forces and using the media to our advantage. When you have a concise, strategic and anticipatory media management plan, you can institute great fear and apprehension in to your enemy, with fear you can almost defeat your opponent even before he sees you.

  14. doziex says:

    Major benbella, abi na acting major (lol), yeah oga, I saw that president museveni’s BBC comment, as a direct dig at nigeria.

    You see visionary leaders like museveni, can already see the ramifications of the french involvement in 2013, not 1990’s. Even the french themselves, are tired of playing the african empire game.

    The man spoke with pride, how he has transformed the UPDF from a conscript peoples army to one of the armies to watch on the african scene.
    While we see refurbished T-55 tanks with amisom in somalia, the UPDF fields T-90 & T-72 tanks, isreali 155mm atmos self propelled howitzers(SPH), bmp-2s, RG-31s nyala, several south african mrap types, a fleet of mi-17s and mi-24s ( I never knew they had that many to crash in the kenyan wilderness).
    Museveni has also acquired used s-200 SAMs, and other theater defense missiles, upgraded 6 mig-21s to the indian airforce/ isreali elbit mig-21 bison aka poor mans f-16. They also posses 6 mig-23s, probably a gift from gadafi.

    And of course the crown jewel of the UPDF, the SU-30MK2 for a warping 750 million usd.

    The man is not playing and knows what he is talking about, A nation’s bark, must always be backed up by a significant bite.

    Now with the exception of president shehu shagari, which nigerian leader can boast of such a record ?

  15. peccavi says:

    Oga Acting Major Benbella,
    I agree and disagree. On the food donation stuff there is a difference between getting food as a gift and necessity. As Chinua Achebe says a man does not call his relatives to eat because they do not have food at home but because its good to share.
    In every theatre I’ve served in even the poorest person will offer you water or a soft drink. In fact in some parts of Afghanistan they offer you tea laced with cannabis, if you don’t drink you have offended them. So I don’t look at this with too much askance.
    However Nigeria has an unfortunate history of letting itself down, as can be seen from feeding issues in SL and Liberia as well as allowances and even pensions. It is completely anathema that any officer could allow hos men not to eat or get their due payment but we all the speeches so far by the top brass have alluded to these problems and we can only hope that due to the fact they were mid ranking field officers during that period they will recognise and make sure that problem doesn’t reoccur.
    If Nigeria is experiencing supply problems already its a problem, it shouldn’t happen particularly so close to Bamako. Right now the boys should all be on locally produced fresh rations as they haven’t been deployed far. I can not see this as an issue and if it is then to be brutally honest the commander and his logistics officers should be shot as there is no logical reason for it. If its someone in the MoD then he should do 20 years hard labour and be shot at the end of his sentence.

    • eyimola says:

      The deployment is wholly inadequate. AFISMA does not give the impression of being able to take on the insurgents on their own. I saw this assesment by a Pentagon Official a couple of days ago, and this seems as well a place to share it. Original article was in:

      Quotas countries of the Economic Community of the States of West Africa (ECOWAS) sent in Mali is a “force totally incapable” who “has not been up to,” said April 9 high Pentagon official, Michael Sheehan. A statement coinciding with the start of official withdrawal of the French army engaged on the ground.
      “At this stage, the forces of ECOWAS is capable of anything. It is a force totally incapable, it must change, “criticized Michael Sheehan, counsel for the Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict, during a hearing in the Senate. African force consists of approximately 4300 soldiers of the ECOWAS member countries, including Togo, Senegal, Benin, Ghana, Niger, Sierra Leone, Côte d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso, which in addition 2000 Chadian military (non-member ECOWAS) and some 4,000 French soldiers.
      The Pentagon official, however, welcomed the French operation, which he said was “absolutely excellent.” “The French have reacted very quickly and very quickly AQIM pushed beyond the Niger River. They regained control of the northern cities, “said Sheehan. “Now France is trying to focus on the hunt for members of AQIM and their removal from the battlefield,” he observed.
      “Force parallel”
      Three months after the start of military intervention, January 11, France withdrew this week its first troops of Mali. “It is logical that, gradually, it withdraws. But we slowly, pragmatically and clear, “said April 9, the French Minister of Defence, Jean-Yves Le Drian. “At the end of the summer,” he said French soldiers will be less than “2000 and then gradually we will eventually set that revolve around 1000 for a period of a little more important. ‘
      The African force is called in the coming months to make way for a peacekeeping operation of UN peace which would partially over. One of the options suggested by the Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is to deploy 11,200 peacekeepers alongside a “parallel power” in charge of fighting Islamic extremists.
      “The fight against terrorism”
      Michael Sheehan, Somalia is a good example of what to do in Mali: a UN force tasked with a “mission reasonableness” of forces supported by “more capable” as Kenya and Ethiopia in the case of Somalia. “Revealing AQIM mountains and attack their leadership is a job for a much larger force capable. The UN can not do this and we should not expect her to do so. This will be the French, perhaps with our support “to deal with, said the U.S. official.
      Paris proposed to maintain a thousand men forward in Mali ” equipped to fight against terrorism . ” This force would be “parallel” to the UN that wish to set up to take over the French troops and Misma the strength of countries in West Africa, Mali to stabilize.

      Fundamentally Ecowas looks really bad, and by implication Nigeria

  16. G8T Nigeria says:

    One simple truth is for us to acknowledge that the Nigerian press is running without caution on excuse of democratic tenets. I think we are getting carried away with it and in no time would be the genesis of a serious crisis in nigeria. Even if we had food shortage, such info is very vital to the enemy and could exploit tht line for attack. Nigeria donated relief materials, food items and others worth millions of dollars to the malian goverment few weeks after landing her troops, so how come, even when several BAGs of food stuffs were seen loaded into many trucks on arrival. Its high time we rise up against this media brohaha against our country. Sun newspaper opens another chapter as never u see something good on its front page” MASSACRE IN YOBE”” BOKO HARAM BEHEADS CLERIC”
    “20 BUCTHERED IN CHURCH” etc, this captions only spread panic and fear in the name of profit. Friends don’t get decieved, even in america the press is not so free. The american interest is supreme and its evident on movies let alone press activities. Are u telling me all bombs fired by french forces at militants in mali, or NATO in libya, US in iraq only killed the culprits, no civilian deaths especially when u know terrorist usually use women and children as shields? Back info is never heralded not bcos some int media houses don’t know but they are cautioned my dear.
    Nigeria on the other hand need to rise up to occassions now especially as she seek to be a member of the UN security council. Without military power there is absolutely no way. Now is the time to get the military well equipped for on/off tasks as they come. I am praying to see that happening but not when embarrased by another nation.
    In field ops, there is base hq where units are assigned different tasks to different locations, those units are usually given field rations whch is to keep men going. That nigerian troops are suffering does not mean other troops are having cocktail in the desert. All field military ops worldwide from past to present usually have food shortages and from history, a powerful nation in the west during WW2 issued dry rations (like uncooked rice) to her troops. This is not to give excuses for nigeria but to state that we shd at least be mindfull of our media activities in times like these.
    AFISMA on the other hand seems divided in approach and did not do the expected planning but deployed in a hurry bcos the french were on ground and had started the battle. Money was voted for the operation and I expected all troops will be fed from it.Nigeria who contributed the largest troops numbering 1200, spent the highest, abt 50million dollars cannot be in a situation of needing food just after fews months. Although curruption is painfully our problem no doubt but from countries I have visited it is packaged properly and looks ideal, IMF and other monetary bodies with very strigent loan accruing percentages are packages that maintains standard curruption. Sometimes with the blink of an eye turns out to be billions of dollars in repayment. Subduing third world nations and in return give them peanut grants on education, health etc. There is no Ideal society in the world and that’s include nigeria.

  17. beegeagle says:

    I am not too particular about what these guys say. Nobody outside their orbit would enjoy any rave reviews until it is crunchtime. AMISOM was tipped for failure, just as they are already tipping the Congo Interposition Force for the doldrums. I would rather see matters as they pan out when it starts. All I can say is , Nigeria, go there with too much rather than too little of anything.

    As it is today, the terrorist threat/action in Gao thus far(after the conventional phase) has not been anything more outlandish than what we have seen in Damaturu and Potiskum and does not approach the scale of Kano, which is 100 times more populated for good measure. Kano is under control, terrorist ‘flareups’ regardless. Do the combo of Gao,Timbuktu+Kidal pose as much of a threat – in the quantum of weaponry or scale of violence – as Freetown did? Can any battle at this stage be more of a daunting challenge than the rebel invasion of the Chadian capital, Ndjamena in Feb 2008 spearheaded by 300 ‘technicals’ carrying everything from 23mm cannons to 14.5mm HMGs and from mortars to 107mm MRLs? Let’s move on, shall we?

    Nigeria have four battalions in Darfur. I have said this before – three would do. Send one to Mali instead. We have more at stake there and Sudan do not really want UNAMID to function optimally. Reason why they impose so many limitations and restrictions, claiming “sovereignty” No artillery, no tanks, no attack helicopters. I do not even think they want an interposition force. All they are thinking of is regime survival and they see a big plot to upstage the Bashir regime in everything.

    Pull out a battalion from Darfur and at another level, step up the number of MOPOL men in there. The total deployment could stay the same even if the particulars are changed.

    In Liberia, we have two battalions+Engrs+Signals and MEDE units. Remove one battalion. For bilateral LBR-NGR ties, maintain an artillery battery and retain the officers and NCOs on secondment there as we speak. Leave one UNMIL battalion and back it up with an Engineer Squadron. Send a MOPOL FPU to join them. Liberia have turned the corner already. One infantry battalion should be enough in Liberia.

  18. Number one says:

    Chad troops start Mali pullout citing lack of experience with guerrila warfare.

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