President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari yesterday reiterated his commitment to rid Nigeria of terrorism and insurgency as well as resolve all associated national security and humanitarian challenges in the country. But Nigerians believe that the President’s lackluster handling of security challenges in the country was behind the incessant killings by herdsmen in parts of the country.
Buhari stated this at the Graduation Ceremony of the National Defence College Course 27, on Friday in Abuja. He said that in spite of the commendable progress made by the armed forces in combating terrorism and insurgency, the nation was still beset with some existential and fundamental challenges. He said the Boko Haram for instance, having lost their insurgency campaign, now factionalised and mutated into a new form of terrorist threat. “Armed banditry and vandalism, kidnapping, pastoralist/farmers conflicts, cultism and political violence have become the new threats.
Buhari said, “Other crimes such as proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons, drug trafficking, drug and substance abuse and communal conflict, all add up to the security mix. Furthermore, the state of education, the youth bulge, unemployment, socio-political and ethno-religious divisions, fake news and hate speeches all help to quicken and compound the security challenges.”
He however claimed that, “Our government is poised to promote national security and development; we remain committed to promoting a vision of a secure, safe, just, peaceful, prosperous and strong nation. Indeed, we shall be employing all elements of our national and human resources to ensure security, a just society, peaceful co-existence, national unity, prosperity and sustainable development, while promoting our good standing abroad,’’ he said. He also commended the college for keeping to its mandate and the efforts to re-organise and rebrand the centre to enable it to conduct research on contemporary issues of security and development.
Earlier, the Commandant, NDC, Rear Adm. Mackson Kadiri, said that the higher defence strategic studies programme of the college had gained international acceptance as a valid strategic professional military training education in Africa and beyond. Kadiri disclosed that 127 participants drawn from Nigerian military, the police, relevant ministries, departments and agencies of government as well as military officers from allied countries graduated from the course. He explained that the number was made up of 94 officers of the rank of colonel, brigadier general of army and equivalent from the sister security services and three commissioners of police.