The Chief of Defense Staff (CDS), General Lucky Irabor, has declared that the Nigerian military will never demand peace and security of the country from “the terrorists”.
General Irabor made the declaration Friday while fielding questions from State House reporters after President Muhammadu Buhari decorated all new service chiefs with their new ranks.
The CDS, who promised improved synergy among security agencies to guarantee peace in the country, assured that the Armed Forces would work to achieve the target set by President Buhari.
Irabor, while reacting to a question that sought to know the role played by the Nigerian military in the recent negotiations that led to the release of the school children from their abductors, said: “Peace and security is not just the security of the borders alone. It comes with having to build bridges across various divides.
“We as members of the Armed Forces will never in any way demands peace and security of our nation in the hands of the terrorists. Rather it is we that will determine the peace and not for us to live it in the hands of the terrorists.”
On what to look out for in few weeks as directed by the President and the expectations of Nigerians in 100 days, he said: “That is a matching order that Mr President has given to us and we will work assiduosly to achieve that.
“No doubt, next 100 days is not as important as today. I believe that as members of the Armed Forces working in concert with the rest of the security agencies, we will bring Mr President’s expectations to bear in terms of our task. But let me also let you know that the inevitable is that Nigerians will indeed experience peace and security across the land.”
Irabor, while speaking on the next big step and whether there would be a change of strategies, said: “I’m glad you talk about the next big step. Nigerians expect us to bring about peace and security in concert with other security agencies, that we will do. We can’t live in fear. And we will ensure that whatever brings fear to Nigerians before now will be a thing of the past.
“Strategies are not sancrosant. Of course, there are dynamics that we need to begin to look at, what needs to be reviewed, and that is precisely what we are doing currently. And we review various strategies and of course come up with new ones to be able to meet the demands of the current realities.”
He refused to speak on what he called the”trump card” to achieve the target set.
On what he would be doing differently from his predecessors, Irabor said: “I will rather say what we will not do. What we will not do is to give instructions to our subordinates and not do the same. By extension, we will command the troops based on the expectations that we have of them and they will do it according to the expectations that we have of them too.”
President Buhari had earlier decorated the new service chiefs at the Council Chamber of State House, Abuja.
The new service chiefs whose appointments were recently confirmed by the National Assembly were Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Major-General Lucky Irabor, Chief of Army Staff (CAS), Major- General Ibrahim Attahiru; Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo and the Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Vice Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao.
With the decoration, the CDS becomes full General, CAS Attahiru attains Lieutenant General, CNS becomes Vice Admiral, while CAS Amao rises to Air Marshal.