- Says new military chiefs can’t see evidence of procurement
By Kingsley Nwezeh
The National Security Adviser, Major General Mohammed Babagana Monguno (rtd), declared Friday that billions of naira voted for the purchase of arms for the fight against insurgency and armed banditry cannot be accounted for.
The NSA, who spoke in a BBC Hausa programme, said the new military chiefs had not seen any evidence of arms procurement in their records and hand over notes.
He said on assumption of office, the new service chiefs did not see any evidence of purchase made.
The former service chiefs are former Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Olonisakin (rtd), former Chief of Army Staff, Lt General Tukur Buratai (rtd), former Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas (rtd) and former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar (rtd).
President Muhammadu Buhari recently appointed the former military chiefs ambassadors after their retirement.
In an interview with BBC Hausa service Friday, Monguno said the failure to provide arms to frontline military personnel was a setback for the fight against insecurity in the nation.
“It is not that we are not working to end the security challenge in the country. The president has done his own part and allocated huge amount of money to purchase weapons but they are yet to be here. We don’t know where they are.
“I am not saying that the past service chiefs have diverted the money, but presently we don’t know where the money is”, he said.
On the possibility of a probe into the disappearance of the funds, he said: “I am sure the president will investigate this. As I am talking to you now, even the Nigerian Governors’ Forum has started questioning where the money is.
“So I assure you that the President is not playing with anything that has to do with the people”.
According to the NSA: “I can’t say the money was stolen but we didn’t see anything and even the new service chiefs said they didn’t see the weapons.
“It is possible the weapons are on their way coming. Maybe from America, England and other places but as at now, I didn’t see anything and the service chiefs too didn’t see any weapons too.”