The new service chiefs appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, are in for a tough, rough ride to secure a country bedevilled by a mishmash of internal security challenges– long-drawn insurgency, raging banditry, secessionist threats and rising cases of kidnap for ransom.
The presidency pulled a surprise Tuesday afternoon when it suddenly announced the “resignation” of the four service chiefs.
Citing many reasons, experts said the service chiefs couldn’t have resigned, insisting the president must have asked them to go.
President Buhari had, for a long time, ignored calls by citizens and key stakeholders, including the National Assembly, to sack the service chiefs.
The top military officers affected by the change were the Chief of Defence Staff, Abayomi Gabriel Olanisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas and the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.
The outgoing service chiefs were appointed by President Buhari in July 2015, serving for five years and six months before their reported resignation on Tuesday.
In their place, presidential spokesperson Femi Adesina announced that the president appointed Major General Leo Irabor as the Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Ibrahim Attahiru as the Chief of Army Staff, Rear Admiral A.Z Gambo as the Chief of Naval Staff, and Air Vice Marshal I.O Amao as the new Chief of Air Staff.
The new service chiefs will be stepping into the pinching shoes of their predecessors, characterised by endless security problems, which the foursome was unable to fully resolve.
Though internal security is primarily the duty of the police, the military has almost completely taken over that function from the police since it was called in to help quell the Boko Haram uprising, which went out of control of the police.
For over 10 years, the military is drawn out to respond to all manner of security breaches and enforce law and order, straining its capacity in the process. (DailyTrust)