Lord Dannatt wants African Soldiers to be compensated.

Lord Dannatt has expressed his support for African soldiers to be compensate.
Lord Dannatt has expressed his support for African Soldiers to be compensated
THE FORMER head of the British Army has backed calls for the government to compensate African veterans who were paid less than than white soldiers during the second world war. 

The soldiers’ plight was recently highlighted in a documentary by al-Jazeera English and in The Guardian. It has been revealed that the African ex-servicemen were paid three times less than their white peers, including those from the same African colonies. 

 General Lord Dannatt told The Guardian: “It would be perfectly reasonable to ask the government to acknowledge it and, if they felt inclined, to make an apology. He added: 

“It is absolutely right to recognise the service of anyone of any colour and indeed nationality that was fighting for the crown in the cause of freedom in the second world war … If there have been abuses relating to their service, then it is absolutely right that they are identified and corrected where possible.” 

 In the documentary, one veteran, Eusebio Mbiuki, said he was often beaten by officers. Another said he and others were treated like slaves. Dannatt added that a “modest ex gratia payment” would “add substance to the otherwise rather empty words” delivered in an apology, The Guardian reported. 

 Dannatt’s comments come after several MPs raised the issue with the government. Last month, in a letter to secretary of state for defence Gavin Williamson, secretary of state for international development, Penny Mordaunt and foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt, Labour MPs Emily Thornberry, Nia Griffith and Dan Carden, wrote: 

“I am sure you all agree that these revelations are utterly reprehensible. When we look back at posters celebrating the joint service of men from the Empire and Commonwealth during the Second World War, each of them willing to fight and die to save civilisation from fascism, we see black, white and Asian marching in step under the banner ‘Together’. 

 “All these years later, it is an unutterable disgrace to discover that the reward for that brave service was so callously calibrated according to the colour of those soldiers’ skin, and I am sure you will agree we must now work together on a cross-party basis, and do everything we can as a country to repair this shameful episode.” 

 Williamson, Mordaunt and Hunt’s counterparts outlined several areas for them to look into, including establishing whether the disparate pay policy was also applied to soldiers of different races from the Caribbean and other Commonwealth countries and colonies.

The Voice 

Post a Comment