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Synergy between military actors is essential to fight against insecurity – expert

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Synergy between military actors is essential to fight against insecurity – expert

By Millicent Ifeanyichukwu

Prof Bola Akinteriwa, former director general of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), said synergy between military stakeholders is essential to address security challenges in the country.

Akinteriwa said this in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency (NAN) on the sidelines of a two-day regional security workshop at the University of Lagos (UNILAG).

The workshop on the theme: Security challenges in West Africa; Multiformes et Perspectives, was organized by the UNILAG African Cluster Center (Africa Multiple), Center of Excellence in African Studies.

He said the government’s efforts to address the security challenges in the country would not yield the desired result with divisions within the military.

“Let me tell you that there is no better army in Africa than that of Nigeria. They are the best. When in Dafour, the UN had to post people, they put an Indian to be there. But others have said that if you want a solution to the problem there, go get the Nigerian military.

“These are people who are internationally respected. Now, in this case, if we don’t do well here, it means that when our military goes to the battlefield, the enemy inside will send a signal to their accomplices and sabotage their efforts.

“That, in itself, is a critical problem to be solved. If you are able to use your wits to spot those who are working against you, then you are already 50% near the solution.

“If there is synergy between military actors in the fight against insurgency and other vices, this administration led by President Buhari will succeed in an unprecedented way,” Akinteriwa told NAN.

He also stressed the need to refine the protocols allowing the free movement of people in the region, noting that this, if achieved, would bring peace among member countries.

“We must not allow any of these countries in the sub-region to take advantage of this free movement and create problems for us as a people.

“We also need to improve our foreign diplomacy. We may need to deepen the kind of relationship we have with some of these foreign countries because not all of them could really work in our best interests, ”he said.

Speaking also, Brigadier. General Hassan Mamman Lai (retired) said tackling the security problems in the country and the region must remain a concern for all.

Lai, who was also the workshop’s keynote speaker, stressed the need to always quickly tackle security issues to avoid escalation.

“We must not wait for it to get out of hand to find solutions.

“We all have to show this commitment, we have to come together to face it collectively, as a group,” he said.

Professor Osarhieme Osadolor, acting vice-chancellor of Ambrose Alli Ekpoma University in Edo, said the insurgency and terrorism had taken on a global configuration.

Osadlor noted that in West Africa, particularly Nigeria, the deep concern for the safety of all has created uncertainty, fear and concern among citizens, visitors, investors and tourists.

According to him, when a company is under siege, investors fear and wealth creation collapses.

“This explains why security is the main justification for the existence of the state and the main beneficiaries are people, social groups, objects and institutions, ecosystems and entities.

“The consequences of insecurity are immediate. The challenge is to address security issues, as well as other threats to peace and development in West Africa as a whole.

“I have always advocated the adoption of a new security governance with roles and responsibilities shared among all security sector shareholders in the sub-region,” he said.

For his part, Professor Muyiwa Falaiye, director of the university’s Institute for African and Diaspora Studies (IADS), said the theme of the workshop was appropriate as the center had always wanted to do something to security in the country.

Falaiye noted that the center has made an effort to organize conferences that would theoretically explain some of the challenges the country has faced in the area of ​​security.

“This is why this workshop is timely and also fits into the agenda of the Lagos Africa Cluster Center, as well as the general agenda of the Institute for African and Diaspora Studies at the University of Lagos. .

“This is just the beginning, there will be many follow-up workshops, meetings, retreats, conferences and discussions on this important security issue on the West Coast of Africa.

“So for us at IADS we are happy to be associated with this workshop, we are happy that the invited people who know either conceptually or practically about security issues have come forward to lend their voices to this workshop. issue in our country and sub-region.

“By the end of this workshop, we hope to have a clear idea of ​​why we ended up where we are and most importantly, how we can solve some of these challenges.

“It is important to note that it is easy to talk about challenges but more difficult to talk about finding lasting solutions to such challenges,” he said. (NAA)

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