The Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, Sen. Ali Ndume, has urged the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, to remain focused in tackling security challenges in the country.
Ndume made the call when he led members of the committee on oversight visit to Army Headquarters on Thursday in Abuja.
He said that the Senate and Nigerians recognised and appreciated the recent successes of the Nigerian Army in the fight against insurgency, banditry and other forms of criminality across the country.
He said that the increased heat by the troops in Zamfara had forced many bandits to flee to neighbouring states, urging the army to continue the onslaught to smoke them out.
Ndume assured Yahaya that the National Assembly would continue to give Nigerian Army the needed support to be able to discharge its constitutional responsibility effectively.
He also urged the army authorities to ensure that its needs were properly articulated in the budget to enable the Senate to give it proper attention.
“The purpose of oversight is not audit but to ascertain what you have done with the money given to you and what you still need to do your work.
“The aim of the committee’s visit is to show appreciation, support and give commendation to the Nigerian Army for the tremendous successes recorded so far in the fight against insurgency, banditry and other forms of criminality that is bedeviling our country almost everywhere..
“We are here to urge the army to remain focused and keep the good work until it is over, using what we all know as the kinetic and non-kinetic operations in tackling insecurity with the aim of achieving the desired result within the shortest possible time.
“I want to assure you that the Senate Committee on Army and indeed the leadership of the National Assembly are always ready to offer you full support towards achieving your mandate.
“We will not delay in making sure that you achieve your goal within the shortest possible time by securing the country where Nigerians can sleep with their two eyes closed,” he said.
Responding, Yahaya, commended the committee for the continuous support given to the army so far.
He said that the just concluded second and third quarters COAS conference afforded him the opportunity to interact and review the activities of Nigerian Army with a view to improving on its operations.
He thanked the lawmakers for encouraging and supporting them in their operations and activities.
The COAS urged the lawmakers to feel free to go round all army units and formations for oversight, saying their activities would benefit the service.
“We appreciate the oversight and we are not covering anything but we want you to go round and see things for yourselves.
“We are aware and appreciate the support of President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Assembly in the area of funding and equipment,” he said.