By NBF News

The Chief Of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant-General Azubuike Onyeabor Ihejirika, has described the spate of bombings across the nation, especially the December 31explosions at the Mogadishu cantonment, Abuja, as a rude awakening for the Nigerian army.

These developments, he said, had called for the need for constant vigilance and alertness by officers and soldiers of the Nigerian army.

Ihejirika, who gave the charge at the 2010 West Africa Social Activity (WASA), organised by the Army Head Quarters Garrison located at the Mogadishu cantonment where the December 31 explosions took place, condemned the acts of terrorism across the nation, wondering how such ugly action hitherto alien to Nigerian nationals had suddenly become a pastime for some disgruntled persons.

Represented by the Provost- Marshall of the Nigerian Army, Major-General Yusuf , on the occasion, the COAS reminded the officers and soldiers that the nation was at war against violent crimes across the country and stressed the need for all to be prepared always.

He said: 'It is our collective responsibility to maintain the security of the nation. Today, the challenges we face are many, real and serious. They will not be met easily but because we have responsibility to protect, the time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit as the state of our security calls for bold and swift action.'

'We will act not only to restore law and order but to lay a good foundation for prevention of crimes through vigilance in cooperation with other security agencies.'

Ihejirika further stated that the challenges demanded greater efforts, cooperation and understanding amongst security agencies, adding that 'our values for success, therefore, depend on hard work and honesty, courage and fairplay, tolerance and curiousity, loyalty and patriotism. What is required of us this year is a new sense of responsibility let us mark the year with remembrance of whom we are and our service to the nation.'

He charged the army to be effective in the vital role expected of them in maintaining security during the April general elections.