Friday, August 14, 2015 9:47 pm
Retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno, the National Security Adviser (NSA), said on Friday, that the Nigerian Armed Forces were poised to end the insurgency in the North East.
Monguno made the remark during a courtesy visit to Gov. Kashim Shettima of Borno at the Government House, Maiduguri.
He said that the new leadership of the armed forces was made up of intelligent and proven officers equal to the task.
“The President has given us a mandate to crush the insurgents. We do not have any choice than to end the insurgency as directed. The ball is in our court and we are going to undertake visits to see the troops, familiarise ourselves with their situation and then embark on rapid counter insurgency campaign.
“As you are all aware, there is a new government in place in our country – Nigeria, and there is the tendency to have replacements for government officials.
“One of these replacements had been in the military with the change of Service Chiefs about a month ago”, Monguno said.
He added that he was appointed NSA alongside new service chiefs by President Muhammdu Buhari, with a special mandate to end the Boko Haram insurgency.
“The President had left us with no doubt on what he wanted us to achieve, taking into consideration that the most pressing issue facing our people is the insurgency in the North Eastern part of the country”, he said.
He added that they would have hit the ground running earlier, “but I felt we should wait for the Senate to confirm the appointment of the service chiefs and for Mr President to decorate them with their new ranks.
“That is why, less than 48 hours after the decoration, we are here today in Maiduguri”, he said.
“The purpose is for all of us to come and re-assess the operational situation on ground with a view to effecting the required changes at the strategic operational and tactical levels.”
He said the President had demonstrated commitment towards ending the insurgency.
“His commitment in ending the insurgency is not in doubt as he has charged us to carry out this mission knowing well that he had picked the best people to end the carnage.
“I can assure you that these officers are the very best you can get as they are officers of impeccable character because they have assured me that they are going to confront the problem to the best of their abilities”, Monguno said.
He appealed for support from residents of the state toward achieving successful operation.
“While we are embarking on counter insurgency campaign, which hopefully will end soon, we want the governor who had shown commitment to end the insurgency to push a step further.
“He can do this by involving a wider society in Borno as well as collaborating with his colleagues in neighboring states.
“This will pull in the larger society to work with the military to end the insurgency”, Monguno said.
He said it will be difficult to end the insurgency without the support of the grassroots.
“I will be misleading you if I tell you that the problem will be solved by the military alone.
“Conflict in the 21st century is different from what we knew in the cold war era; conflict in the 21st century is unclear.
“The only way we can overcome the problem is by involving the larger society,” Monguno restated.
He pointed out that the war against insurgency had faced problem in the past.
“In the past there had been issues of mistrust, issues of mutual suspicion rooted in the notion that the military is here to reduce the population.
“We want to reassure that we are part of the larger Nigerian society”, Monguno said