The Chief of Staff to the Nigerian President and former Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN), Professor (Ambassador) Ibrahim Agboola Gambari, has advocated for the review of the country’s National Defence Doctrine.
Prof. Gambari made the advocacy, in the face of the changing nature and patterns of the current security threats confronting the country, while presenting a lecture at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) 20th Convocation Lecture in honour of the graduating cadets of 69 Regular Course (RC) and postgraduate students of the Academy, held at the Academy Auditorium, Afaka.
Presenting a paper titled: National Security, Defence and Diplomacy in a Changing World Order, Professor Gambari, who was the guest speaker at the event, postulated that it has become imperative to look at the components of the nation’s security doctrines and infrastructure in order to determine the right mix of convention military operations and capacity for cyber warfare needed to match the current security challenges.
“As with our internal security services, the times also call for constant investment in the comprehensive review of the curricula for the training of the national defence forces to imbue them with strategic planning, foresight, and futures capability that ensure they are as operationally proficient in reacting to threats as they are efficient in anticipating patterns and containing challenges,” he added.
During the lecture, Professor Gambari did foray on the factors that have affected world diplomacy and the effects of the changing world powers on countries, as well as some other conditions such as the climate change and the changing social demographics in different parts of the world, which have all culminated into the current global security threats.
Gambari noted that, for Nigeria in particular, the trans-border migration into the nation from various West African countries, and the burgeoning youth population throw up very unique security and social challenges.
Ambassador Gambari, who advocated for a comprehensive approach to defence, security and diplomacy which combines the internal security of the state with the security of the people within an integrated human security paradigm, averred that the overriding objective of any proactive national defence, security and diplomatic thrust should be the protection of the safety, welfare, dignity and prosperity of a united Nigerian peoples.
“Such issues as the health, food and housing security of the generality of the people contribute to and are as important as the measures that we take to police our communities, roll back criminality, and maintain domestic peace and harmony.”, he noted.
The guest speaker who commended NDA for its enormous contributions to national security and the Nigerian state, noted that NDA has entrenched a culture of excellence since its establishment in 1964, which he added embodies and symbolises the Nigeria’s unceasing quest for nationhood and the protection of her sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity.
He praised NDA for its consistency in training young men and women fully equipped with the requisite knowledge, aptitudes, and skills required of a modern officer corps.
In his address at the event, the Commandant NDA, Major General Ibrahim Manu Yusuf, expressed gratitude to the guest lecturer, Prof Ibrahim Gambari, for recognizing the critical role NDA plays in producing generations of professionals dedicated to prioritizing their personal desires to the service of the nation.
“This pursuit of patriotic purpose by our gentlemen cadets and alumni, sets us apart, and we are grateful to all the stakeholders upon which the motto of this institution – Loyalty and Valour – rests gracefully,” he added.
General Yusuf who extolled the academic and political accomplishments of the guest speaker, revealed that the Chief of Staff to the President is a fine example of the academic traditions NDA is renowned for. He noted that Prof Gambari is an internationally-renowned scholar, diplomat, public administrator, and front-line global affairs specialist who has devoted his life to serving the fatherland and advising its foreign policy-makers for several decades.
General Yusuf added that the lecture “National Security, Defence, and Diplomacy in a Changing World Order” is a stimulating intervention in this uncertain period of global security threats.
The Commandant used the occasion to also advise the graduating cadets of 69 RC and the postgraduate students to see the event not merely as an opportunity to celebrate their capability to excel in a challenging atmosphere but as a pointer to the life as they pursue the career and specializations in which they have been evidently trained at NDA.
The 20th Convocation Lecture in honour of 69 RC and postgraduate students forms part of a string of activities that would culminate in the passing out parade of 69 RC Cadets on 6 October 2022, which is expected to have in attendance the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces, Muhammadu Bahuri, as the Reviewing Officer.
The convocation lecture was attended by senior military and paramilitary officers, members of the academia, members of 69 RC and NDA postgraduate students, among others.