It is no longer news that following the expiration of the 6 months extension of the tenure of Mr. Abdullahi Gana, on January 17th, 2021, and the directive of the President for an immediate replacement, in view of the important role the Civil Defence Corps is playing in national security, many names have been thrown up for consideration as the next Commandant-General of the Corps.
It is noteworthy that Dr. Ade Abolurin,OFR, who handed over to the outgoing Commandant General in July, 2015, indeed left big shoes to be worn. Dr. Abolurin built the Civil Defence Corps from it hitherto unknown state into a formidable security organisation, with proven records in national security and critical infrastructure protection.
As the 6 months tenure extension approved for Mr. Abdullahi Gana, the present Commandant-General, expires this week, the attention of close watchers of the Corps, has been on who the cap fits amongst the senior officers who have undergone screening, vetting, and suitability test for appointment to the office of Commandant-General.
As the race narrows down to three senior officers, there is need for the President to consider the officer with the best track records and performance at selection interview, in view of the need to appoint a Commandant General with real capacity to turn around the Civil Defence, to meet up with the growing security challenges in Nigeria.
The search for a Commandant-General should focus largely on an enlightened, brilliant and cosmopolitan officer, that will retool the Corps and steer it in the right direction, to meet the rising expectations, as Nigeria grapples with the challenge of insecurity.
As President Muhammadu Buhari appoints a new substantive Commandant General for the Civil Defence Corps, it is only appropriate for him to consider competence and capacity, above other factors . If the President desires an effective and progressive Civil Defence Corps, then he needs to appoint a Commandant General that will be a round peg in a round hole.