February 28, 2021

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The newly-nominated service chiefs of the Nigerian Armed Forces on Wednesday in Abuja promised to improve the security architecture of the country.

Speaking separately at their screening by the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on Defence, they promised to bring their wealth of experience in war theatres in the past to bear on their new assignments.

The nominees are Leo Irabor, a major general and Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) and Ibrahim Attahiru, a major general and the Chief of Army Staff (COAS).

Others are Awwal Gambo, a rear admiral and the Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) and Isiaka Amao, an air vice-marshal and Chief of Air Staff (CAS).

In a speech at the screening, the CDS said he attended extensive courses in the course of his military career within and outside the country and assured that he would use the experience to tackle insurgency.

He said as a former Commander of ‘Operation Lafiya Dole’, a special military task force in the Northeast region, he would use that experience to also handle insecurity.

The CDS designate recalled that his tenure as a Commander of `Operation Lafiya Dole’ recorded huge successes.

Mr Irabor said he intended to foster an armed force that would have leadership geared toward professionalism.

On his part, Mr Attahiru, the COAS designate, promised to provide the right leadership for the Nigerian Army, adding that during his time the Nigerian Army would tackle all adversaries within and outside the country.

He said that during his tenure as COAS, all Nigerians would be part of the security architecture to enable the forces to win the war against insecurity.

Mr Attahiru stated that officers and men would be given the needed training with functional equipment and would be provided with an atmosphere conducive to accomplishing the required mission.

Also speaking, Mr Gambo said his appointment was crucial and very critical at a time when the country was faced with security challenges.

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He said he was not under any illusion that his academic qualifications could earn him the required success in the quest to arrest insecurity in the country.

Mr Gambo, however, called for loyalty and support of his officers and men to win the war against insecurity.

He said he would also leverage on technology to fight the security challenges in the country.

On his part, Mr Amao said that he would make the Air force to take control of the country’s air space to curtail terrorism and other insecurities.

He promised to pursue purposeful training and human capacity development, adding that he would do all within his power to foster a strong air force.

He added that he would also improve on the welfare of officers and men to encourage them in the fight to restore security.

Earlier, the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magashi, a retired major general, said the importance of the screening was to seek approval for the nomination of the four service chiefs.

“We are aware of the Constitutional provision that all nominations of service chief be screened by the National Assembly.

“I assure you that the Nigerian military is fully aware of our Constitutional role and I have no doubt that the nominees will make this country proud.

“I assure you that we promise to deliver on the necessary expectations of Nigerians,’’ he said.

Responding, the Chairman of the committee, Babajinmi Benson, said the essence of the screening was to reinstate the supremacy of civil authority over the military.

He said Nigeria was blessed with brave and great soldiers, adding: “it is in this line that we must get it right as a nation.’’

He noted that there was no single solution to security challenges.

“We will be considering commitment to professionalism and welfare in making a choice,’’ he said.

Mr Benson added that national security required an all-encompassing approach to tackle and that Nigeria would require great efforts on the part of its military to end insecurity.


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