The Conference of Civil Society for Peace, Security and National Development (CCSPSND) has decried the rate of media criticism against the military saying it smacks of patriotism sponsored by enemies of the state.
The CCSPSND’s position is coming days after a group, Peace and conflict Resolution initiative and Alliance for Justice and Peace, had taken a swipe against the military particularly the intelligence units following the killing of 63 vigilantes by armed bandits in Kebbi state.
A press statement signed by Dr. Adamu Muhammad and Hon. Mike Msuaan, Conveners of CCSPSND and made available to journalists in Abuja, accused the groups of working with enemies of the country to undermine the efforts of the federal government and the security agencies in the war against insurgency and banditry.
“We have read with dismay the statement signed by one Dr. Aliyu Bello and Ambassador Jude Uchenna of the Peace and conflict Resolution initiative and Alliance for Justice and Peace in their reaction to the unfortunate killing of sixty-six vigilantes, in Kebbi State by armed bandits. This group clearly made unsubstantiated claims against the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and even personalities which will feel must be addressed to put the records straight.
“The Conference of Civil Society for Peace, Security and National Development (CCSPSND) vehemently condemns the publication as baseless and done in very bad faith. The tone and personal attack on individual offices as shown in the publication amply indicated a group of people on a poisonous mission against the common good of our beloved country. It is either the conveners of the groups lacked the understanding of the workings of the intelligence agencies and architecture in the country or they are blinded by the mere peanuts promised to them by their faceless sponsors.
“The gains made in the war against terror in the northeast, northwest and secessionists’ elements in the southeast and southwest should tell every Nigerian that the security forces are working together and for the overall good of the country”, the statement noted.
The statement further explained that the decisive successes achieved in the war so far is as a result of strings of credible intelligence efforts provided to the fighting forces on land and in the air insisting that the accuracy with which the airstrikes and clearance missions are carried out only suggests sophistication in intelligence gathering by the DIA and other intelligence agencies.
The CCSPSND said it was sad that the group would allege that, the DIA is manned by loyalists of former service chiefs, noting that the current set up of the DIA is made up of very patriotic and determined military officers who have been part of the war against insurgency and banditry in the country and are versed with the tactics to combat the terrorists and bandits.
“The current leadership of the DIA who was the CMI left indelible marks in the North East theatre of operations. Under his watch, there was a massive decimation of Boko Haram terrorists, their informants, collaborators and logistics suppliers. The records are there and open for anyone to see. They are therefore not new to the war and have not been appointed into the intelligence unit as a mark of loyalty to any former service chief.
“All the current service chiefs and others holding key appointments in the military were critical parts of the previous military leadership. It is therefore strange why the DIA was singled out for the campaign of calumny by those seeking to benefit from changes in the leadership,” the CCSPSND maintained.
“We are shocked to read a very demonic conspiracy concocted by enemies of Nigeria whose logic is not just imbecilic but kindergarten and devilish in all ramifications.
“The unfortunate cowardly attack on members of Vigilante groups in Zuru area in Kebbi state remains condemnable. We have confidence in the ability of the military and other security agencies to bring the perpetrators to book”, CCSPSND added.
It further called on Nigerians to discountenance the allegations against the military and continue to cooperate with security forces to further destroy elements of disunity adding that Mr. President knows the output of the intelligence agencies particularly the DIA and will certainly disregard any group that do not mean well for Nigeria.