*Vows to deal decisively with threats to national security
Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja
The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Christopher Musa, yesterday declared that the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) remained in support of sustained democratic rule in the country.
Speaking at a meeting with military commanders in Abuja, the defence chief, who vowed to deal decisively with threats to national security, said security forces must do all it takes to ensure that democracy thrives in Nigeria.
Musa warned that terrorists, armed bandits, and kidnappers will not be spared.
The defence chief also hinted at the restructuring of military operations in view of evolving threats and the need for new strategies even as he emphasised the compelling need for joint operations of the military and other security forces.
“Democracy remains what we stand for. We must do everything humanly possible to sustain democratic rule.
“We have the trust and support of Nigerian people. We must honour that thrust,” Musa said.
He vowed that all threats to national security must be decisively dealt with.
“All threats will be dealt with decisively. No kidnappers, terrorists, and bandits will be spared,” he added.
Musa promised that the military high command would look into the issues raised, notably inadequate manpower, lack of support weapons, and drones, among others.
“Other challenges like the inadequate manpower, lack of support weapons, gun trucks, and drones, as well as the inadequate tracking equipment and the teams to operate them have been noted. The issue of inadequate personal rifles will also be addressed.
“Another crucial aspect that emerged from our deliberations is the need for innovation and adaptability.
“The security landscape is ever-evolving, and we must continuously assess and improve our strategies, tactics, and capabilities to effectively counter emerging threats.
“Embracing new technologies, fostering a culture of innovation, and promoting a learning mindset is essential for maintaining our operational edge. Let us encourage and empower our personnel to think creatively, to challenge conventional wisdom, and to embrace change as we strive for continuous improvement,” Musa explained.
The defence chief told the commanders of joint task forces to embrace synergy of operations.
“One of the key takeaways from our discussions has been the importance of unity of effort. As commanders, we must foster a culture of cooperation, collaboration, and synergy among our forces.
“By breaking down barriers, sharing resources, and leveraging each other’s strengths, we can maximise our collective impact and achieve our shared objectives.
“Let us bring this spirit of jointness back to our respective task forces and integrate it into our daily operations.
“Similarly, the need to reform the structure of the various operations was keenly noted and will be considered,” he said.
Musa further urged the commanders to priortise the welfare of personnel and foster relationships with communities in their areas of operation.
“Furthermore, we must prioritise the welfare and professional development of our personnel. Our greatest asset is our human capital, and it is through their dedication, expertise, and resilience that we achieve success on the battlefield.
“As commanders, we have a responsibility to ensure their well-being, provide them with the necessary resources and support, and create an environment that nurtures their growth and development,” he added.
“Let us invest in their training, mentorship, and career progression, recognising that their success is intricately tied to the success of our joint operations.
“I would also like to emphasise the importance of building and maintaining strong relationships with the communities we serve,” the CDS said.
Musa added that “the trust and support of the local population are critical in our efforts to counter-insurgency, terrorism, and other security challenges.
“We must continue to engage with community leaders, religious leaders, and other stakeholders, listening to their concerns, addressing their grievances, and involving them in the decision-making processes.
“By doing so, we can gain valuable insights, foster cooperation, and build resilient communities that are actively involved in securing their futures,” Musa added.