Security Situation Can Undermine Nigerian State, Says Defence Chief

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Senator Iroegbu in Abuja

The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin, has warned that the myriad of Nigeria’s security challenges are fluid and capable of wrecking the corporate existence of the country.

To this end, he called for the patriotic commitment of all stakeholders for the unity, peace and security of the country.

The CDS stated this on Thursday at the Defence Headquarters (DHQ), Abuja, during the one-day Defence Correspondents’ seminar titled: “Constructive Reportage as an Important Ingredient for National Security”.

He said that the media and military are two of the most important stakeholders in projecting, promoting and protecting the national security.

According to him, it is incumbent on all the stakeholders in the national security and allied sectors to assist Defence media practitioners to build human and institutional capacity to facilitate effective performance and goal attainment, especially on issues that affect national security of Nigeria.

“It is important from the onset, to state that although, we play different roles and may see things from different perspectives, we all must be responsive as stakeholders in the overriding task of nation building,” he said.

Olonisakin noted that in a developing nation like Nigeria, which is engulfed in a dynamic flux of security challenges, the media are required to build bridges of understanding between the military and the people in the discharge of its national security mandate.

He emphasised that as professionals, the two parties are expected to have a clear understanding of the challenges confronting the country, which include pastoralist/farmers’ clashes, cattle rustling, kidnapping, militancy, vandalism of Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) particularly oil facilities, ethnic nationalism, terrorism and insurgency.

He said: “These challenges singly and collectively, have the grim potentials to undermine the Nigerian State. These are very potent and sensitive crisis situations that have the capacity to wreck our ship of state, if not handled with utmost care and professionalism that they deserve.

“To prevent this, the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) have been called upon to provide Military Assistance to Civil Authority (MACA) in accordance with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).”

Further details later