New CDS Leads New Service Chiefs to Maiduguri Theater Command, ,Pledges Improved Security, Welfare, Operational Equipments

By Sadiq Abubakar, The Nigerian Voice, Maiduguri
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In about twenty four hours after taking over mantle of leadership on Friday, the newly appointed Chief of Defense Staff, (CDS), Major General Lucky Irabor led the new Chief of Army Staff ( COAS), Major General Ibrahim Attahiru, Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao and the Chief of Naval Staff Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo on Sunday to the Theater Command Headquarters of Operation Lafiya Dole Maiduguri on a familiarization Visit.

The CDS and the service chiefs who arrived Maiduguri about 1 pm moved straight to the theater command headquarters of the Military Command and Control Center for an interactive meeting with the theater commander, Major General Yahaya Umar Faroiq, 7 Division General Officer Commanding GOC, Major General Abdul lbrahim Khalifa and other other GOCs and Unit Commanders of the Operation Lafiya Dole.

They Immediately went into a closed door meeting for about an hour before leaving for a courtesy call at the Government House Maiduguri on Governor Babagana Umara Zulum and later visited the Shehu of Borno before returning to the theater command to address the press on the outcome of the meetings and visits which was to see how best they can inject more ideas in the fight against

Briefing journalists, the CDS said", you know the service chief led by myself arrived Maiduguri around 1 pm and proceeded to the headquarters of Operation Lafiya Dole, Maimalari Cantonment, Maiduguri where we entered into closed door meeting with the theater Commander and other component commanders that lasted for more than an hour.

"The service Chief's were also at the Government House, Maiduguri on a Courtesy visit to Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno state.

While at the Government House, I said " we are in Borno for not a new reason. We were appointed on Tuesday and we took over the mantle of office two days ago and we felt our first point of call should be Borno because of Boko Haram insurgency and our efforts towards the decade long insurgency".

" We are here to change a new leaf and also to see how we can improve on the success recorded. I want to use this opportunity to call of the citizens of Borno and the Northeast in General to cooperate with our troops", General Irabor added

In his remark, Governor Babagana Zulum called for synergy between the services chiefs for effective collaboration to end the Boko Haram insurgency so that lasting peace will be restored back to the state and country at large.

"In a democratic setting, we are subject to constructive criticism and these Criticism will spur you to do better. I therefore call on the Chief Army Staff, Chief of Air Staff, Chief of Naval staff, as well as other security chiefs to work together . This is the key in our efforts to defeat insurgency", the governor added.

Addressing the press at the theater command after courtesy call to Governor Zulum, homage to the Shehu of Borno, HRH, Alhaji Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbai and the wounded soldiers at the 7 Division, Nigerian Army Hospital and Medical Services Center Maimalari Cantonment Maiduguri, the CDS further said that what the troops are doing is what is expected of them. The troops will receive a new boost and improvement in terms of welfare and equipment. The armed forces is responsible for territorial integrity of the Country while the police deals with the internal issues. What I will tell you is there will be an improvement. We have passion for security of the.oountry and we are presently working on how to improve the situation we met on ground.

Myself and the service chiefs are here in Maiduguri to get the facts and know the isusses on ground with a view to tackling them. We are prepared and ready to address the issues and that is why we are here today and we shall also continue to interact with the theater commander and other GOCs and unit commanders to actually know what is going on.

"And fine-tune how we can collectively as a team work out a modality and strategy of addressing these issues ranging from troops welfare, equipments procurement , on transit and those required to improve on the operations towards providing adequate security to lives and property of the citizenrry as well as maintaining the territorial integrity of our nation, Nigeria", Irabor said.

While addressing the troops at the theater command, the CDS said all efforts towards improving on their welfare and equipment will not be tampered with but rather improved upon.

He further commended the troops for their bravery and gallantry while assuring them of a renewed system that will reinvigorate the entire operation collectively and jointly pursue the mandate of the Nigerian military which is to return peace to the state, region and county at large.

General Irabor also assured that all efforts will be made to ensure adequate security and safety of lives and property in the maintenance of national integrity, security and protection.

He charged the troops to continue with the good work they were doing and the new leadership of the Nigerian military is strongly behind them and with them anytime, anywhere while boosting their morale.

Earlier, at the Shehu's Palace, the CDS and Service Chiefs were received by the Royal father who thanked them and also congratulated them for their appointments and wished them God's guidance and protection while thanking them for the visit and recognition of the role of traditional Institutions in maintenance of peace and unity in the society.

The Shehu however commended the military efforts in providing security in the state and appreciated President Buhari concern for the state and former CIAS Gen. Tukur Buratai for his services and assured them of continuous support to the military to restore peace in the state and Lake Chad region.

The CDS while responding assured him of their loyalty and continuous patronage of the traditional council in the provision of security and restoration of peace in the state and region at large.