BY BY DEMOLA AKINYEMI & DAPO AKINREFON
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Azubuike Ihejirika Monday in Ilorin disclosed that the number of people so far killed by the Boko Haram sect is 3000.
Major Mohammed Abubakar who represented the Chief of Army Staff said this while declaring open the third inter-division and headquarters map reading competition organized by the Nigerian Army Education Corps (NAEC) at Sobi barrack in Ilorin..
Major Mohammed Abubakakar the General Officer, Commanding 2 Division of the Nigerian Army, also said that the current security challenges in the country required collective and extra efforts to tackle.
According to him, “The changing nature of threats to Nigeria’s national security environment has manifested in the militancy, kidnapping, violent extremism and terrorism.
It is a know fact that terrorism worldwide is characterized by extremism, violence hatred, lack of respect for human dignity and constituted authority.
He added that,“The spate of bombings in parts of the north has necessitated the Nigerian Army to review its doctrine with a view to updating our training and operational procedures in order to fulfill our constitutional mandate.
Success in this pursuit, therefore calls for renewed and concerted efforts and initiative.
General Ihejirika urged all and sundry to remain resilient to “be able to overcome the miscreants and terrorist attacks on our psyche and our beloved country through conscientious effort for the country to make good progress.
It is in this line, that I commend the determination of NAEC to write and publish a book on ‘terrorism.’
“This will no doubt positively contribute to our determination to fight the present security challenges.
The book will also serve as a reference material for researchers on Nigeria Army viewpoint and strategy against domestic terrorism.”He added.
Earlier, the Corps Commander, NAEC, Major-General Lucky Banjiram said the current security challenges in the country had continued to undermine national security.
He added that the challenges had thereby placed great strains and demands on the Nigerian army’s resources,stressing that “it becomes necessary therefore to re-emphasise the need for training and retraining of army personnel”.
He explained that the competition is NAEC’s effort towards the training of its personnel and the creation of a pool of instructors in map reading for the Nigerian army.
Ekwueme, Owie back dialogue
Dr Ekwueme at the Second Annual Lecture for Values in Leadership, with the theme: “Re-inventing true federalism”, held at the National Institute of International Affairs, NIIA, Lagos hoped that Boko Haram’s willingness to dialogue would lead to peace in the country.
According to him, “it is a security question, which I am not qualified to advise on, but those who are trained in that business should give you the answer. What I mean is that, it will be very useful to the country if the bloodshed and blood-letting by Boko Haram can stop so that we can move on in peace.”
On the ongoing process by the National Assembly to review the 1999 Constitution, he said,“I do not expect them to manufacture it, they will work for it because the constitution as it is now has over-centralised powers.”
Commending those who organised activities to celebrate his 80th birthday celebration, he said “I am very flattered.”
On his part, Senator Roland Owie, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in Edo State appealed to the Federal Government to commence negotiations with the group and advised President Jonathan not to refuse the dialogue.
In a statement, he said, “I urge Mr. President to negotiate with the Boko Haram.”
The word of God says: ‘be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Do not judge others and you will not be judged. For the measure you use for others will be the measure God will use for you.’”