Apparently miffed by the relentless bloodletting by the terror group, Boko Haram, President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday ordered the new service chiefs to do everything within their power to end the insurgency within the next three months.
The president gave this directive yesterday when he formally decorated the service chiefs with their new ranks at the presidential villa, Abuja.
With yesterday’s promotion, the chief of defence staff (CDS) is now General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin, chief of army staff (COAS) is now Lt. Gen. Tukur Yusufu Buratai, the chief of naval staff (CNS) is now Vice Marshal Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas while the chief of air staff (CAS) is now Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.
He told them to go back to the drawing board and map out strategies that would bring to an end the gruesome activities of Boko Haram insurgents within three months.
The president said, “You are all aware of the various security challenges facing our nation. These challenges include the activities of Boko Haram terrorists, armed banditry, kidnapping and militancy of various forms, to mention a few. The activities of these misguided groups and individuals have resulted in wanton destruction of the life and property of our citizens and a disruption of the socio-economic life of millions of Nigerians.
“While commending the efforts of the armed forces so far, you need to brace up and continue to team up with other stakeholders to come up with a well-coordinated joint effort which will bring a desired end to this insurgency within three months,” the president stated.
Buhari also told the service chiefs that they must go back to work and make the country proud, to justify the honour accorded them with their positions.
He expressed confidence in the capacity of the service chiefs to deliver on the tasks before them, saying it was their sterling leadership qualities that recommended them for elevation to their new ranks. Rightly, the armed forces have been in the vanguard of the fight against terrorism.”
President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, jointly decorating the Chief of Army Staff Lt. General Tukur Yusufu Buratai.
Buhari also told the service chiefs that in the course of carrying out their assignments, they must be accountable for all men, equipment and other resources placed under their command, even as he said they must keep their troops’ welfare uppermost in their mind.
He added that, on his part, his government was ready to give the military the needed resources to achieve success.
“You will recall that I have been to several countries with the sole aim of canvassing for global support to eliminate terrorism from Nigeria. These efforts, which include establishment of the Multi National Joint Task Force, should be complemented by you. You should, therefore, re-professionalise your force and give your troops creditable training so that they can perform their jobs creditably.
“You should also ensure that they abide by the newly enforced rules and regulations of international standards while carrying out their assigned tasks. In particular, you must protect innocent civilians in the theatre of conflicts. This, no doubt, will earn you the support of local communities and the respect of our allies and support of the international community. Get back to work and make Nigerians proud,” he urged them.
The president was assisted by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and the wives of the service chiefs while decorate them with their new ranks at the ceremony which took place inside the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa.
Speaking on behalf of the service chiefs, the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Abayomi Olonishakin, said he was thankful to God and President Buhari for according them honour to serve their fatherland.
He assured the president that he and the other service chiefs would work hard to justify the confidence reposed in them by the appointment.