The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Major-General Ibrahim Attahiru has given 48 hours ultimatum to the troops of the Nigerian Army, Operation Lafiya Dole, to clear Marte Local Government Area of Borno State, which was recently attacked and taken over by the Boko Haram sect.
He also directed the troops to clear Kirenowa, Kirta, Wulgo, Chikingudo communities of Marte and Ngala LGAs in the state.
Attahiru gave the ultimatum on Sunday while addressing troops of the Nigerian Army Super Camp 9, Dikwa.
He said: “areas around Marte, Chikingudu, Wulgo Kirenowa and Kirta must be cleared in the next 48 hours.
“You should be rest assured of all support you required in this very onerous task.
“I have just spoken to the Theater Commander and the General Officer Commanding 7 Division, you must not let this nation down. Go back and do the needful and I will be right behind you.
“You are aware of the recent attack on Dikwa and Marte, you should not allow this to happen again, go after them and clear these bastards,” Attahiru said.
While appreciating the efforts of the troops in the fight against Boko Haram, the COAS said: “I am here to deliver the greetings of Mr President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed forces, Muhammadu Buhari. I have spoken with your Commanders, we are going to provide you the equipment and weapons you need to end this war.
“We are also going to address the issue of overstay in the theater. No more issue of overstay.”
Obasanjo Lauds Kogi Gov Bello For Good Governance, Tackling Insecurity
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has commended Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi on his efforts in providing security, good governance, and infrastructure building in the state.
The Chief Press Secretary to Kogi governor, Mr Mohammed Onogwu, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.
Onogwu, who quoted Obasanjo as making the commendation when he met with the governor on Sunday in Abuja, added that the former president urged him to sustain the efforts.
He stated that the meeting between Bello and the former president ended with fruitful discussion.
Obasanjo while commending Bello for successfully tackling insecurity in the state, said Kogi was central to the nation’s development.
He urged the governor to sustain his efforts in providing security for his state, noting that Kogi was central to the nation’s peace and development.
The former president noted that the fight against insecurity should have everybody on board, stressing that governors should involve everyone to ensure insecurity is curtailed in Nigeria.
Obasanjo appreciated the governor for his developmental efforts in the state especially in the areas of youth and women inclusion in politics and governance, infrastructure, health and education.
He further urged the governor to continue to be an advocate for youth involvement in governance.
Responding, Bello thanked the former president for his statesman’s role, fatherly disposition and wealth of wisdom which the young leaders are privileged to tap from.
The governor noted that though his state was surrounded by 10 other states and the FCT making it the nexus between the South and North, West and East of Nigeria, Kogi, one of the 19 Northern States, stands in stoic defence against criminal elements.
This, he said, had made Kogi one of the safest states in the country.
Bello assured Obasanjo that he would not relent in the fight to ensure total safety for his people and will continue to do his best to ensure his electoral promises are fulfilled.
The governor prayed that God would continue to protect the statesman and grant him good health and long life.
Osita Chidoka Writes Open Letter to EFCC Chairman
Open Letter to EFCC Chairman
My Dear Abdulrasheed Bawa,
Congratulations on your appointment as EFFC Chairman. As somebody who share some similarity with your trajectory, I want to advise you as the euphoria of your appointment publicly, and the deluge of advice continue to come your way. Usually, I would have been critical of this appointment as it continues the profound disrespect and insensitivity to the constitutional provision on Federal Character. The appointments in the paramilitary, intelligence, police, and military organisations since the inception of this administration have been so lopsided but not my letter’s subject. I will continue that conversation at an appropriate place.
Today I support the generational shift that your appointment represent. We should remove all the clauses in our laws that create an age barrier to executive positions. It is anachronistic and against the spirit of the not too young to run Act.
Your appointment is reminiscent of mine as Corps Marshal in 2007 when I was35 years. The difference with yours is that you came from within the organisation. The first challenge you will face as a young man is the difficulty your direct reports who are older and more experienced than you will have taking orders from you. They will pledge their loyalty, laugh with you but will be bitter and rightly so. Those who publicly try to belittle you or want to be the leaders of the opposition to you should be quickly excused from the organisation through transfer of service or termination if necessary. Do not try to convince or manage them. It won’t work.
They will try to do two things expose you to public ridicule as an intemperate and inexperience young man by pushing you to make rash decisions. If that does not work, they will try to show you ineffectual, incapable of taking decisions, and always waiting for the Attorney-General to direct or run to him for cover. You can avoid both by establishing a universe of principles that guide you. Still sleep over decisions. Learn to use weekly management meetings to get free advice and guidance on issues you are not conversant with. Don’t be shy to ask questions. I always ask my staff, “What should I say,” before I appear on any media or official function. You are the leader, not omniscient.
You are now Chief Executive, past interactions and friendships should not cloud your action. They may try to blackmail you. Don’t give in. Abdulrasheed the investigator is not the same as Abdulrasheed the Chairman. Always remember that. and make it clear to your colleagues. A new Sherriff is in town.
Quickly set up a team to review the commission’s mission and the journey so far and develop a corporate road map for the future. If such a document already exists, the team should review it. Hire a world-class consultancy firm to guide the review and choose three countries you admire or those rated highly in preventing corruption and use them as your benchmark.
Continually benchmark your work. My mantra of Measure, Monitor, Improve is recommended. Relentlessly measure and monitor. Quantify always, as our culture is not a numerate one and our public service is weak in data collection and analysis. Train a small team to do that.
Do keep a diary. You will need it. I kept a diary but was not religious in updating it to my regret. President Reagan kept a diary daily for his eight years as President, so there is no excuse. Keep a copy of all the approval you grant, and important circulars, Nigeria’s ruling and media elite are vicious. Be ready to defend yourself.
Dimension your time to 48 months. That way, you will realise that every four months is 10% of your time, and you need to work to achieve your road map within your first term debarring any changes. Time is your enemy. Don’t spend time celebrating. Don’t stand still while you are waiting for the roadmap. Move on to the tactical issues confronting you.
As a staff, you know all the murmuring of the junior and senior officers. Usually, they include the backlog of unpaid transfer allowances, late promotion, punitive postings and exclusion of other ethnic groups from core operational functions. Deal with them. You are too young to be burdened by the fault lines of a dying order. Successful organisations are inclusive, goal-oriented, merit-driven, and anchored on fairness.
Create opportunities to interact with staff. Invite them randomly to eat with you or travel with you so you can remain grounded. its lonely upstairs, especially if you are young.
Create a safe place for the female staff of your organisation. It is an issue. Please encourage them to speak out against abuse and gender discrimination. Remove all rules that discriminate against women and entrust them with operational roles. I believe you are disciplined don’t fall for their feminine wiles. Keep clear.
On the job, you have a decision to make, and history will guide you. How do you want to be remembered? I think you have an advantage of age, ICT knowledge, global training and on the job experience. I think you should embrace technology and work on digitising the commission you promised during your Senate clearance. Purge the commission of the police analogue and brute force mentality. Technology will make your investigating team productive and help in preventing corruption.
Do not be frightened by the plight of your predecessors. Be bold. Be guided by facts and data. Don’t make media show when you have no evidence. Strike like the MET police or the Singapore Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau, not the past Chairman’s unintelligent media posturing. Good investigating agencies don’t arrest people and start looking for evidence. Combine the boldness of Nuhu Ribadu and the meticulousness of DIG Lamorde as your guide.
Finally, the powers that be will use you. Be smart about how you go about it. Fairness is important. Use them too to get funding and support for your agency. Anchor your work with global institutions so you can use them as an excuse to ward off undue influence. The last for me: truly fight corruption. The war against corruption needs a sociological and philosophical underpinning. Lead that conversation.
Corruption is at the root of the state failure staring us on the face. We have to re-establish a fair compensation system; otherwise, the excluded will continue to seek ways to equalise those with unfair access to state resources. We must fight corruption.
Fight without fear or favour. Kick big and small men hard; you have enough time to make peace afterwards. It is better Nigerians fear than love you. Our love is worth nothing if you are judged incompetent.
Gov Udom Mourns Late Air Marshal, Nsikak Eduok’s In Awka Ibom
… APPROVES 30 HECTARES OF LAND FOR NAF AIR TRAFFIC SERVICES TRAINING CENTRE
It was an outpouring of encomiums and glowing tributes as the remains of the 12th Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF), Late Air Marshal Nsikak-Abasi Essien Eduok, were laid to rest at his country home in Mbak Ekpe on the outskirts of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State. The funeral service and interment ceremony, which took place today, 27 February 2021, attracted dignitaries and sympathizers from all walks of life including the current CAS, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Oladayo Amao, and the Executive Governor of Akwa-Ibom State, Mr Udom Emmanuel. Late Air Marshal Eduok died on 6 January 2021 at the age of 73.
Speaking during the burial ceremony, the CAS, AVM Amao, described the late Air Marshal as an amiable personality, a man of valour and integrity and a great achiever, with unprecedented drive for success. “He was a mentor to so many of us both serving and retired. He was one of the best hands in the NAF who steered the tide of the Service towards the successes recorded in the past years. He changed the landscape of the Service and left the scene like a hero while the ovation was still reverberating”, the CAS said. According to him, late Air Marshal Eduok contributed significantly to the development of the NAF. He noted that the late CAS was his personal mentor, a great fighter Pilot whose transformational approach to leadership tremendously impacted on the development of the NAF. AVM Amao further described him as an accommodating Air Marshal, whose astuteness, diligence and dedication during his sojourn on earth made significant and considerable impacts in “our lives and the NAF as a whole”.
Speaking further, AVM Amao stated that while serving as the CAS, late Air Marshal Eduok brought his wealth of operational and administrative experiences to bear in steering the affairs of the NAF. The feat, which he said, ultimately led to the outstanding transformations the Service is enjoying today. He noted that the late former CAS was renowned as the first CAS to procure an attack helicopter which enhanced the offensive capability and operational effectiveness of the NAF. “A warrior that he was, Air Marshal Eduok saw to the successful conclusion of the National Peace Enforcement efforts in Liberia and Sierra Leone. Even in retirement, the late former CAS continued to make invaluable contributions to the development of the Service, with significant inputs towards the restructuring of the NAF to make it more effective in dealing with contemporary security challenges facing the Country. His contributions to NAF operations in pursuit of Nigeria’s national security and stability will forever be remembered”, the CAS said.
While condoling with his immediate family for the loss, AVM Amao noted that the late Air Marshal Eduok would be missed for his timely and professional contributions not just to the NAF and Akwa Ibom State, but also to the entire Nation. Accordingly, the CAS said, in honour of his sacrifice to the Service and the Nation and in recognition of his extraordinary passion for fitness, the Ultra-Fit Gymnasium Centre at the NAF Base Yola, was commissioned and named after Air Marshal Nsikak Eduok (retired) to immortalize him. “To his immediate family as well as the Executive Governor and good people of Akwa Ibom State, we indeed share in your grief and reassure you of our continuous support in these trying times. Just about 2 weeks ago, Akwa Ibom State bade farewell and laid to rest, the first indigenous Military Administrator of this State and a senior Air Force officer, late Air Commodore Idongesit Nkanga (retired). These events are huge losses to the NAF, Akwa Ibom State and indeed the entire Nation. We are however very proud and highly honoured to have worked with your amiable husbands, fathers and illustrious sons,” AVM Amao said.
In his remarks, the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State, His Excellency, Udom Emmanuel expressed a deep sense of loss and grief on behalf of the Government and good people of Akwa Ibom State, as he bade farewell to Late Air Marshal Nsikak Eduok, whom he described as a quintessential Nigerian patriot, a trail-blazer, an epitome of courage and bravery, a decorated Air Force Officer and above all, a husband, father and a devout Christian. He stated further that, the late CAS was one of the Ambassadors in Akwa Ibom State who epitomised the State’s defining characteristics of duty, honesty, transparency, integrity, love for country and God which he brought to bear in the course of his illustrious career with the NAF where he rose to the pinnacle of the Service as the 12th Chief of Air Staff; “the first Akwaibomite to ever occupy that exalted position”, he said.
Speaking further, the Governor said that the late CAS, in retirement, chose to relocate to his home State, and was a dependable statesman, a voice for reason and moderation whose counsel when sought was always ready and on point. “Let me end this oration by quoting a line from the 19th Century Unitarian preacher and writer, Minot J. Savage ‘The brave die never, though they sleep in dust. Their courage nerves a thousand living men” he stated.
Meanwhile, the Governor has approved 30 hectares of land for the NAF for the construction of NAF Air Traffic Services Training Centre (ATSTC) in Uyo. This was disclosed yesterday, 25 February 2021 by the CAS, AVM Amao, during a courtesy call on the Governor. The CAS also used the opportunity to thank the Governor for his support to the family of late Air Marshal Nsikak Eduok while he was in the hospital and after his death.
Speaking during the courtesy call, Governor Udom Emmanuel congratulated the CAS on his appointment and urged him to kick-start the construction of ATSTC without further delay. The Governor stated that the CAS was appointed at a critical time when the Country is facing serious security issues. He expressed his condolences on behalf of the good people of Akwa Ibom State to the CAS on the loss of the 7 NAF personnel who lost their lives in the recent ill-fated air crash. Mr Emmanuel assured that the State would continue to support the NAF in every way possible remarking that the State would be available to host any of the NAF’s or Armed Forces’ events, especially sporting competitions. He equally appreciated the CAS for ensuring that standards were maintained at the Air Force Comprehensive Secondary School in Akwa Ibom State to make it the best public school in the South-South Region and one of the best in the Country.
Other dignitaries who graced the burial ceremony were the Deputy Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Mr Moses Ekpo and the Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly as well as Distinguished and Honourable members of the National and State Houses of Assembly. Also present were the Honourable Minister of Niger Delta, Senator Godswill Akpabio; Former Service Chiefs; as well as Representatives of the Chief of Defence Staff and Service Chiefs as well as several other serving and retired Senior Military Officers.
Air Vice Marshal
Director of Public Relations and Information
Nigerian Air Force
27 February 2021
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