The Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, yesterday said that the ongoing Boko Haram insurgency had exposed inherent flaws existing in the Nigerian Army, even as he reiterated his commitment to right all the wrongs with the country’s number one armed force.
The army chief made this remark while delivering a keynote address at the opening of the ongoing 2015 Regimental Sergeant Majors’ (RSM) Convention taking place in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital Buratai noted that the counter-insurgency operations had tested the capacity of Nigeria Army such that “it has exposed some major flaws in our discipline, regimentation and professionalism as well as the general conduct of officers and men of our Army.”
He declared that his vision as the number one soldier was “to have a professionally responsive Nigeria Army in the discharge of its constitutional roles.”
Buratai said he was committed to achieving the restoration of the core values of soldiering which are “discipline, regimentation and professionalism,” adding that these values would position the army effectively to defend the territorial integrity of Nigeria within the confines of constitutional guidelines.
He said the RSMs, who are the most important link between officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army, as well as custodians of unit regimentation, must be well packaged in discipline, knowledge and motivation to enable him achieve his vision for the country’s army.
The COAS said it was in the light of the above premise that the theme of this year’s RSM’s convention was tagged “Enhancing the Capacity of RSM’s to be Professionally Responsive in the Discharge of their Roles”.
He thereby urged the 300 participating RSMs to take advantage of the opportunity provided by the convention to brainstorm and come out with better ways that would ensure troops remain focused in the “just cause” of ridding Nigeria of the scourge of terrorism and insurgency.
Borno State governor, Kashim Shettima, who was the guest of honour at the opening ceremony of the convention, commended the army for bringing the 2015 RSMs convention to Borno State even as he eulogized the core values of the RSM in the army.
“The RSM does not only come as a person with commanding presence but also the livewire of the soldiering profession,” he noted.