New service chiefs and Boko Haram’s new onslaught



Now that President Buhari has finally parted ways with Jonathan’s men and has since approved the appointments of Major-General Babagana Mongunu (RTD) as National Security Adviser, Major-General Abayomi Olonisakin as Chief of Defence Staff, Major-General T.Y Buratai as Chief of Army Staff, Rear Admiral Ibok-Ete Ekwe Iba as Chief of Naval Staff and Air Vice Marshal Morgan Riku as Head of Defence Intelligence, while Lawal Musa Daura has been appointed Director General of Directorate of State Security (DSS), with Abdulahi Gana Muhammadu appointed to man the NSCDC, the question on the lips of Nigerians is – could these be the long awaited “messiahs” that would finally do the needful that would effectively put a permanent end to the menace of Boko Haram in this country?

One bears in mind that some of the problems that has hampered and slowed down the wheels of progress of Nigeria’s fight against insurgency also includes the activities of traitors and Boko Haram sympathizers within the rank and file of the military and para-military agencies, rivalry and lack of proper and elastic intelligence-sharing among the different security agencies, and human rights abuses and extra-judicial killings of innocent Nigerians by the military. Nigerians patiently and eagerly awaits how and what these new sets of service Chiefs would do differently, to bring BokoHaram to its knees.

Corruption, indiscipline and fifth columnists are the issues which must first of all be “weeded” and effectively uprooted from the military if we are to make any meaningful headway in defeating Boko Haram. Systematic and intelligence measures should be put in place to identify and “fish out” Boko Haram informants and sympathizers.

Cases of human rights abuses and extra-judicial killings must be properly investigated and perpetrators brought to book. The different security agencies must “pocket” their ego and needless rivalry and work together in intelligence-gathering and sharing to achieve a common aim of stamping out insurgency and other forms of violent crimes in the country. Whether the present administration or the new service chiefs knows this or not, the release of the Chibok girls and their subsequent reunion with their families and loved ones would be the high point of their success in the war against Boko Haram. The time to finally and permanently crush Boko Haram is now or never!

Hussain Obaro,
Ilorin, Kwara state