Coalition kicks against calls for sack of Service Chiefs



The Coalition of Civil Society Organisations has kicked against the renewed calls by some North-East elders for the sack of Service Chiefs in the wake of recent nationwide #EndSARS protest by some youths.

The Head of the Coalition, Mr Shina Loremikan, spoke against the call at a media briefing in Lagos on Friday.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the coalition is a conglomerate of 16 civil society organisations.

NAN recalls that some elders from the North-East had on Wednesday renewed their calls for the removal of Service Chiefs to strengthen the war against terrorism and banditry.

The elders, under the aegis of Coalition of North-East Elders for Peace and Development (CNEEPD), said the protests continued after scrapping of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

They said that the calls was necessitated because of the frustration occasioned by worsening insecurity in the country.

Loremikan said the incessant calls for President Muhamadu Buhari to remove the Service Chiefs at every turn was capable of lowering the morale of the officers and their men at the “Theatre of Operation”.

He said the call was an attempt to also demoralise the nation’s armed forces and its leadership who were currently engaged in tackling series of insurgencies and other internal security challenges.

The coalition leader saidd that many of the calls was politically motivated by some self-serving politicians and their sympathisers.

He said: “We are really dismayed over the inability of these leaders to acknowledge the efforts and landmark achievements that have been made by the Nigeria military.

“This is in the fight against insurgency and other forms of banditry across the country over the past few months.

“The call for the removal of service chiefs at the time is defining moment in our history, leaving much to be desired.

“Let not forget that the Boko Haram insurgents are lurking around waiting to strike, if we lowered our guards by acceding to the calls of those who want them removed; it may spell doom.”

Loremikan also urged the Federal Government to improve the financial obligations of the nation’s armed forces.

According to him, this is to improve their capacity toward effectively tackling the unfortunate crisis being witnessed in some parts of the country.

He said that Sen. Ali Ndume, Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, had said many times that the military lacked the required and modern equipment needed to prosecute the war against the insurgents.

Loremikan said Ndume had explained that the budget of the army was inadequate compared to other countries that were not even facing the Nigerian situation such as fighting insurgency, banditry, kidnapping, just to mention.

He said recently a Commander of a troop, Col. Bako, paid the supreme sacrifice as he was ambushed, while his troop lost some men to the rampaging Boko Haram.

The leader said if he had modern equipment like drones and attack helicopters, there would have been a clearance operation to clear all the landmines before they proceed on the operation.

Loremikan also noted that the #EndSARS protests across the country was a sign of the evils bedeviling the governance structure in the country.

He said the protest was just a trigger of the crisis in the education, healthcare, lack of infrastructure, unemployment and underemployment in the country.

Edited By: Cecilia Odey/Olagoke Olatoye
Source: NAN

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