Take fight to bandits, insurgents, Lawan charges new Service Chiefs

Senate President Ahmad Lawan on Tuesday charged the new Chief of Defence Staff and Service Chiefs to take the fight to bandits and insurgents in a renewed bid to ensure security of lives and property across states in the country.

Lawan gave the charge during plenary in his remarks after the Service Chiefs were confirmed for appointment by the Senate.

The new Service Chiefs are: Major General Lucky Eluoye Onyenucheya Irabor – Chief of Defence Staff; Major General Ibrahim Attahiru – Chief of Army Staff; Rear Asmiral Awwal Zubairu Agambi – Chief of Naval Staff; and Air Vice Marshal Isiaka O. Alao – Chief of Air Staff.

The Senate President, who bemoaned the poor security situation in the country, emphasized that the confirmation of the service chiefs places squarely on them the responsibility of addressing the problems of banditry, kidnapping and insurgency.

He said: “Let me take this opportunity to thank the former Service Chiefs for doing their best, and also advice the Chief of Defence Staff and New Service Chiefs that Nigerians expect so much from them.

“We are in a very serious situation. The security situation must be improved, and the buck is now going to stop on their tables as far as operations are concerned.”

Lawan while underscoring the importance of security in Nigeria assured of the continued support of the National Assembly to the new leadership of the military.

He described as “unacceptable” the recent activities of bandits which saw the kidnapping of students in Katsina, Niger, and Zamfara states, respectively.

The Senate President said: “We in the National Assembly, particularly in the Senate, will continue to support our Armed Forces in whatever way is possible.

“We believe that there is no better investment today in Nigeria, and, indeed at any time, than investing in the security of our country, to protect the lives and properties of our people.

“And, therefore, we will continue to support them, but we expect excellence. We expect them – our armed forces – to take the fight to the bandits.

“In a situation where bandits will come to a school, take over 300 hundred students on motorcycles and disappear into thin air without any trace is not acceptable.

“Something has to give, because apparently this is becoming an industry. Some people are benefitting from this, and we have to unravel who this people are and fight bandits and insurgents until we rescue our country.”

Lawan, therefore, advised the newly confirmed Chief of Defence Staff and Service Chiefs to foster inter-agency cooperation among security agencies.

“Let me also advise the Service Chiefs that there must be inter-agency cooperation.

“The Army, the Airforce must coordinate their activities because they are supposed to have complimentary roles.

“I wish them all the success and we promise them, and indeed Nigerians that we will support them in whatever way is possible; that the parliament will come to their support,” he added.

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