Minister of State for Defence, Dr Olusola Obada
By Senator Iroegbu
President Goodluck Jonathan has voiced the unalloyed commitment of his administration to fight all forms of terrorism and ensure that peace and stability returns to the country.
Jonathan, who spoke through Vice-President Namadi Sambo, stated this Friday in Abuja at the graduation ceremony of the National Defence College (NDC) Course 20.
He commended the efforts of security agencies in tackling the nascent internal security challenges in the country and emphasised that "insecurity remained a front burner national issue to the government".
He said: "As you are aware, insecurity remains a front burner national issue due to the activities of a misguided few.
"Let me assure you that government is more than ever determined to address the novel acts of terrorism that confront our nation".
"I am glad to note that the military is reinforcing its collaboration with the Police and other security agencies to checkmate these unpatriotic activities within our national borders”.
The President also said that Federal Government will be strengthening its collaboration with foreign partners on the Anti-Terrorism and Anti-Money laundering laws.
Jonathan further reassured that his government would continue to render all necessary support to the armed forces and other security agencies in the discharge of their duties.
He also noted that the Armed Forces had proven to be a strategic national institution not only as protectors of the nation’s territorial integrity, but also as a unifying factor in national development efforts.
He maintained that Nigeria remained committed to global peace, saying that Federal Government would continue to collaborate with other countries in order to attain a more secure world that would guarantee peace and development.
"The goal of the present administration is to bequeath to the next generation a more peaceful and united country where all citizens can tap the vast opportunities of the 21st century without fear or hindrance," he assured.
Speaking further, the President stated the determination of the Federal Government to reform the bureaucracy and to tackle corruption and other related vices which he said had continued to retard the nation’s development efforts.
He said: "Our administration is committed to a rebirth of our national values. We are resolved to tackle corruption and other related vices, which continue to retard our development efforts frontally. We are strengthening the Police and other anti-corruption agencies to enable them to rekindle the war against corruption in all its ramifications".
He continued: "As a responsive government, dedicated to meeting the expectations of our people, we are reforming our bureaucracy and strengthening our institutions to ensure greater efficiency and competence.
"We are also determined to build a sound educational base for all strata of the polity, particularly the Armed Forces”.
Concerning NDC, Jonathan assured that government would do all it could to assist the College to move to its permanent site in no distant future.
He congratulated participants of the Course 20 for surviving the rigorous academic programme.
He also urged the graduating officers to utilise the knowledge and experience they had acquired to further strengthen the existing cordial relationship between their respective countries and Nigeria.
Earlier, the Minister of State for Defence, Dr Olusola Obada, expressed appreciation to the Federal Government for the premium placed on the training and welfare of members of the armed forces.
In the same vein, The Commandant of the NDC, Rear Admiral Thomas Lokoson took the opportunity to distil the achievements of the college in recent times, and solicited the support of the government in ensuring speedy movement of the institution to its permanent site.
The Course 20 comprised of 130 participants including 10 officers from African countries.