Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari Saturday in Jaji, Kaduna State, said the Nigerian Armed Forces and their allies are winning the war against terror.
However, the President’s claim does not match the facts on ground in a country where thousands of indigenous citizens, including the daughter of Afenifere’s leader, have lost their lives in terrorist attacks by militant Herdsmen.
Addressing Graduation Ceremony of Senior Course 41 at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College (AFCSC) in Jaji, President Buhari, commended the collaboration with neighbouring countries in the fight against Boko Haram terrorists, noting that the effort was crucial in decimating the enemy.
‘‘Many of the security threats faced by Nigeria are trans-border in nature. That is why the West African sub-region and indeed the African continent must step up the level of military cooperation that currently exists amongst us.
‘‘I am sure you are aware of the collaboration of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, Republic of Cameroun, Niger, Benin and Chad in a multinational operation to decimate Boko Haram terrorists in the Lake Chad Basin and other regions.
‘‘The effort is laudable and has continued to yield positive results, as the war on terror is being won on all sides.
‘‘I want to assure you that Nigeria, in partnership with our allies, will not relent until terrorists are completely decimated,’’ he said.
The President assured that the Federal Government will continue to give priority to the training and welfare of officers and men of the Armed Forces, including the eminent institution, established to train tactical and operational level officers on the tenets of staff work and command.
The Nigerian leader used the occasion to appreciate the Armed Forces for prompt responses to the numerous security challenges facing the county.
‘‘Your response to Boko Haram insurgency, banditry, militancy, kidnapping as well as activities of separatists and armed militias among others have been very commendable.
“The Nigerian Armed Forces have also committed huge resources towards stability of the West African sub-region and world peace in general,’’ he added.
The President told the 207 Senior Course 41 graduates that the nation expects the best from them in terms of commitment to duties, loyalty and service to the fatherland given the time and investments expended on their training.
He expressed delight that the prestigious college had 13 international officers from 11 African countries and the Republic of Korea, who successfully completed Course 41, an improvement on Senior Course 40, which had 11 international students.
The President also commended the management for introducing media awareness packages in its training in order to sensitize officers on the importance and methodologies of utilizing information and media actions in support of military operations.
President Buhari welcomed the modernization drive in the military institution, evident in the establishment of an e- examination centre and rejuvenated library facilities.
The President also praised the college for reviewing its curricula to build the capacity of student officers to become more proficient in military operations that are better situated to addressing Nigeria’s current security threats.
In his remarks, the Commandant AFCSC, Air Vice Marshal L.S. Alao said a total number of 207 students successfully passed through the programme, which spanned 48 weeks.
He said the graduating set began their programme on August 8, 2018 comprising 87 Army officers, 58 Navy, 40 Air force personnel and nine non-military staff and 13 international officers drawn from South Korea, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Liberia, South Africa, Niger Republic and Gambia among others.