Insecurity: Military reorganises to tackle future threats
Faced with several security challenges in recent times, the Armed Force of Nigeria is being reorganised to better tackle such challenges and curb future threats in line with its constitutional role.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin said this Monday in his remarks at the combined event of Nigerian Army Day Celebration (NACEL) and Combat Support Arms Training (COSAT) week at Nigerian Army Ordinance Headquarters, Abalti Barracks, Lagos.
Nigerian military had been tackling several security challenges, ranging from Boko haram terrorism in North east, arm banditry and kidnaping in North west, farmers/herders clash in North central, secessionist agitation and armed robbery in South east, and oil bunkering and pipeline vandalism in South south.
The Defence Chief, who was the Special Guest of Honour at the event, said the contemporary security challenges facing the country are characterised by non-state actors who exhibit intolerance for peace co-existence with other members of the society, and narrow ideologies, radicalism and outright criminal intent. He added that through their act of terror and insurgent activities against the country, the individuals and group had created an atmosphere of fear and panic into the minds of innocent citizens.
“It is therefore very vital that the Nigerian Army continue to lead the efforts to crushing such elements so that the nation will be safe and secured,” he said. Adding that through its operations and exercise in tackling the various challenges the army had continued to demonstrate its resolve to secure the territorial integrity of the country from both internal and external threats.
“The Combat Support Arms consisting of the Artillery, Engineering, Signal and Intelligence will always have a role to play in support of combat arms of the Nigerian Army towards achieving this mandate,” the Defence Chief said.
“In reality, increased efficiency of these corps is an operation enhancer and a force multiplier for any army. Our experiences in the North east and other security challenges in the country underscore the need for capacity building through constant and effective training. Thus the theme for this year’s NACEL, which is ‘Professionally Responsive Soldering: A panacea for Successful Military Operation’ is quite apt and contemporary.
“The COSAT week is therefore an avenue to boost professionalism as participants brainstorm and strategies to better support the combat arms in combating emerging security challenges in Nigeria, hence the theme of this year’s COSAT , which is “Enhancing the Efficiency of the Combat Support Arms in Tackling Contemporary Security Challenges” is very appropriate.’”
Earlier in his opening address, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, said the Nigerian Army had made giant strides since the coming of the present administration in tackling terrorism in the North east and ensuring adequate welfare for personnel.
The Army Chief said this year’s NACEL was still conducted at a time Nigerian Army troops are still battling several security challenges to keep Nigerians secured and safe. He said the army had not only consolidated on the gains recorded in its fight against Boko haram terrorists in the North east, but has progress to the stabilization phase where all efforts were geared towards ensuring the return of internally displaced persons to their ancestral homes to continue with their economic activities.
He said since his assumption of duty as the 20th Chief of Army Staff in July 2015 he had pursued a transformation vision to which is to “Have a professionally responsive Nigerian Army in the discharge of its constitutional role.”
This year the Nigerian Army celebrates 156 years of existence since its establishment as the Glover Hausas in 1863. The choice of July 6, as the NACEL was due to its historical significance as it was the day the first shot was fired during the Nigeria Civil War. The war was fought to keep Nigeria one, and a lot of soldiers were killed in the process. The NACEL is therefore to a constant reminder of the sacrifices paid by troops.