President Muhammadu Buhari says Nigerians have lost confidence in the country’s security sector.
The National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (retd), disclosed this on Tuesday while briefing State House reporters after a meeting of the National Security Council chaired by President Buhari.
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He said President Buhari was determined to restore that trust.
According to him, the president had, therefore, ordered a rejig of security operational strategies in order to prevent further “catastrophe” in the country.
Monguno said the meeting discussed two memos on the problem of drug trafficking and addiction as well as the security situation in the North West and North Central geo-political zones.
The NSA, while speaking on President Buhari’s last marching orders to the nation’s security chiefs that their best effort was not good enough, said that since the issues involved are operational issues, the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magashi, “is working on something” likely to give a new direction to the security agencies.
He said the reckless use of substances had been linked directly to insecurity the country was dealing with, stressing that violent crimes in Nigeria were propelled by the use of substances.
He said President Buhari, who noted that Nigerians had lost confidence in the security sector, was determined to restore that trust.
The security meeting
The security meeting was attended by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (retd), and the Chief of Staff to the President, Professor Ibrahim Gambari.
Others were the Service Chiefs led by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas and the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.
Also present were the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, the Director General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Yusuf Bichi, the Director General, National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ahmed Rufa’i.
The ministers in attendance included the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magashi, the Minister of Police Affairs, Mohammad Dingyadi and the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada.
The meeting was fixed after last Wednesday’s attack on the convoy of Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State on his way to Baga town.
The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), on Monday, had expressed concerns over the attack on the governor’s convoy, saying it epitomised collective vulnerability and the fragility of the nation’s security architecture.
NGF Chairman and Ekiti State Governor, John Kayode Fayemi, in a letter of solidarity addressed to Governor Zulum, which was released on Monday, said the NGF was also worried that the security situation in the country was rapidly degenerating.
The House of Representatives’ Minority Caucus, in a statement signed by the House Minority Leader, Ndudi Elumelu on Friday, reiterated its call to President Buhari to sack the service chiefs following the attack on Zulum by Boko Haram insurgents.
Governor Zulum, last Wednesday, escaped ambush attack by gunmen suspected to be Boko Haram members on his way to Baga.