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Army Promises to Stamp out Boko Haram

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Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika

 

By Chiemelie Ezeobi

The Nigerian Army Monday reiterated its commitment to stamp out the menace of the dreaded sect, Boko Haram, even as it said its personnel are equipped to counter the growing insecurity in the country.

Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, who disclosed this at a seminar organised by the Nigerian Army College of Logistics (NACOL), Lagos, said: “Before now, Nigerians perceived terrorism as a malady afflicting far off nations and lands but unfortunately, some misguided elements have brought this evil home to us.”

Represented by the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 81 Division, Major General Kenneth Minimah, Ihejirika said the theme ‘Evolving Counter Terrorism Strategies for Enhances National Security and Development’ is germane going by the security challenges in the country.

“Since the Boko Haram sect started this campaign of terror, hundreds of lives and property worth millions of naira have been destroyed. Schools, places of worship, private properties, paramilitary and military locations have also not been spared.

“The sect has orchestrated attacks which are deliberately targeted at causing disaffection amongst the diverse people of the country but we praise the resilience of Nigerians and their capacity to discern the divisive undertones of these attacks and have deliberately refused to take retaliatory steps,” he said.

Ihejirika said the Army had taken steps to checkmate the activities of terrorist groups and other criminal elements in the state by improving inter-agency co-operation in terms of intelligence gathering and sharing.

He said several units are currently undergoing counter insurgency and counter terrorism training nationwide, adding that the force structure will be further expanded to effectively counter growing insecurity in the country.

On his part, the state Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, pledged his support in achieving maximum security for the citizenry.
Fashola who was represented by the Special Adviser on Political and Legislative Matters, Hon Muslim Folani, said: “The country is going haywire and we all need to join hands together to nip it in the bud before it consumes us. To achieve this, we need state policing to police our borders which are notably porous. Although it may be difficult at the onset, we will succeed if we put our minds to it.”

In his address, the Commandant NACOL, Major General Thomson Oliomogbe, said: “On our part, we promise to continue to strive to achieve excellence in line with COAS objective of transforming the NA into a force better able to tackle contemporary challenges.”

Source: Thisday

#Nigeria ACN Govs Demand Security Overhaul

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Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State

 

By Adibe Emenyonu

Governors elected on the platform of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) have demanded an overhaul of the security architecture in the country.

They made the demand when they paid a condolence visit to Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State over the gruesome murder of his Private Principal Secretary, Mr. Olaitan Oyenrinde.

Oyerinde was killed in the early hours of Friday, May 4, 2012 by unknown gunmen.

The police, meanwhile, announced Sunday that Oshiomhole had offered a reward of N10 million to anyone who could volunteer information that would lead to the arrest of the killers.

The governors said the time had come for the Federal Government “to do something urgently before the situation gets out of hand”.

Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola, speaking on behalf of four other governors — Ibikunle Amosun, Ogun; Kayode Fayemi, Ekiti; Babatunde Fashola, Lagos;  and Abiola Ajimobi, Oyo — said the security situation in the country remained precarious because all security agencies (military, police, SSS) are under the direct command of the Federal Government.

He said if state governors were in direct control of at least the police alone, most crimes like murder, armed robbery, assassination and kidnapping would to a large extent be nipped in the bud.

“But the situation we find ourselves in this country is that state governors are merely called chief security officers of their various states, while the Federal Government is in direct control,” he lamented, adding that there must be a reversal of the status quo.

Also speaking, Fayemi said it was a sad moment not only for the Edo State Government but for all of them in the labour community especially as the late Olaitan was a major link between Edo and other ACN states.

His words: “We came to commiserate with you and the family of Olaitan. Though we cannot query God, but we have the right to question why bad things happen to good people. Those who have cause to come in contact with him know that he is a principled man.

“We pray that God in His infinite mercy will give the wife and the children the fortitude to bear the loss. However, we have decided collectively we will contribute our quota in supporting the family our fallen hero left behind.

“For those who killed him, we assure them that they must be caught because like you said, it was not a case of robbery or unorganised event. It was deliberate because those who did it knew full well that this is a government that has earned the confidence of the people, and they had to do what they did.”
Oshiomhole assured his fellow ACN governors that the killers would be fished out.

He told them that already, a 14-day ultimatum had been given to the police to track down the killers, adding: “I hope Abuja is sensitive to what is happening and will call the godfather to order. Otherwise, we will call him to order and we have the capacity to do so.”

According to Oshiomhole, “I have already told the police that inasmuch as we do not believe in killing because no office is worth spilling human blood for and that we rely on them to do their job… but if they are not willing to help us, we will help ourselves.”

He said the calculation of those who are behind the killing of Olaitan and the accident that resulted in the death of the three journalists in his convoy was to create distraction and fears among the people so that on the election day, they would have a field day with their rigging strategy.

“But what they have failed to realise is that I have conquered fear many years ago,” he declared.

Describing the late principal secretary as one of the most competent staff that worked with him during his days at the NLC, Oshiomhole said: “He reads my mood, understands my body language. And when I came in as governor, I had to persuade him to come and work with me. That is why his death is more painful to me.”

Announcing the N10 million reward in Benin City Sunday, the Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG), Force Headquarters, Abuja, Mr. Peter Gana, said no stone would be left unturned to get the killers.

The DIG said he was in Benin City to complement the efforts of the state police command.

Source : Thisday

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