The newly appointed National Security Adviser (NSA) Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, assumed duties yesterday with a vow to subdue insecurity and stabilise Nigeria.
Ribadu took over from former NSA, Maj Gen Babagana Monguno, following his appointment by President Bola Tinubu on June 19. This is even as the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Maj Gen Christopher Musa, has assured that the Nigerian military under his leadership would restore peace back in the country.
Musa’s pledge came just as the ministry of Defence is considering the establishment of Octagon and industrial military complex. NSA Ribadu said the Tinubu administration has an enormous responsibility of securing Nigeria, stabilising it and ensuring peace in all parts of the country.
“This is a work for Nigerians and we intend to continue with what has been done. We will stabilise this country, we will secure our country and we will make Nigeria peaceful because we believe time has come for this country to enjoy peace, restore order and rule of law just like any other country in the world.
“Securing the nation is a continuous process. We will look at what has been done and build on it. We will count on your support in the course of discharging our responsibilities. Mr. President has a huge commitment to securing every inch of our country. We will work with all stakeholders to deliver on this vision. This enormous task of securing our country is that of all Nigerians, and all friends of Nigeria,” a statement by his special assistant on Strategic Communication, Zakari Usman Mijinyawa, quoted the NSA as saying.
Ribadu solicited the full cooperation of all servicemen and women, and by extension all Nigerians. He said there was a need to unite to accomplish the present administration’s quest for a more stable, peaceful and prosperous Nigeria.
In his remarks, the former NSA, Monguno, said that Rubadu is well equipped, well qualified, well educated and has a very deep understanding of the complexity of the security challenges confronting the federal Republic of Nigeria. He described the new NSA a man with the capacity to tackle whatever challenges that he might encounter having served in various positions, adding that Ribadu was starting on a good footing.
Monguno stated: “For me, I have been able to handover a comprehensive note to him and also brief him extensively. “For me, I want to give gratitude to the Almighty God for giving the grace to serve for such a long time and also allowing me to depart in good health and enjoy the rest of my life in an atmosphere that is bereft of the type of pressure that are associated with this all important office. I am also wishing in the same vein that Mallam Nuhu Ribadu will have a very successful tenure and depart in good health when the time comes for him to depart.”
Monguno further noted thay the ever changing 21st security environment demands a complex approach. “Today we are dealing with a situation in which we have terrorists and insurrectionists. The way and manner you will deal with the situation is such that you will have to rely on a collection of competent staff”. He urged the staff at the office of the NSA to extend the same support and cooperation he enjoyed to his successor to achieve the desired national objective.
On his part, the new Defence chief, General Musa, whobspoke when he led the Service Chiefs on a familiarisation visit to the Ministry of Defence yesterday, said they were there to present themselves and to also thank President Tinubu for considering them worthy to be appointed to head the Nigerian military.
He stated: “We are here to familiarise ourselves to show our commitment to the set goals of the ministry. On our own part we assure you all that we are committed to achieving the mandate of the president. “We all know the challenges facing the country. I and the service chiefs have come a long way. They joined me at the NDA in 1987 and we have gone through so many challenges, promises and successes.
“We thank God for the opportunity to serve our nation. When we are young we looked forward to changing things, and now the mantle of leadership is thrown to us. Severely I told them, at times while serving punishment, we sit down and grumble that things are not working. Now to the glory of God we have been saddled with the responsibility to face those challenges and proffer solutions. We assure you we’ll put in our very best. Our loyalty is no other way than to Nigeria.
“We want Nigeria to be peaceful. We grew up when Nigeria was peaceful and we know how it looks and we want to ensure that our children also have a country they will be proud of. We assure the Commander-in-Chief of our complete loyalty; unalloyed loyalty to his mandate. We want to tell you and Nigerians that you can rely on us. We are committed. And God being on our side we’ll achieve success.”
In his remarks, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Defence, Abubakar Kana, said the CDS and service chiefs must justify the confidence resposed on them by President Tinubu. “I wish to congratulate you on this distinguished job our dear president has bestowed on you. Indeed it is a sign of respect, and I say to whom much is given, much is expected. Therefore, the country is expecting alot from you.
“You are starting on a very good note because the President has been very clear on his mandate and what he intends to achieve from his campaign to post election. The MoD will key into the vision of Mr President which is to restore peace and maintain internal security while also maintaining the defence of this country. It has developed activities to key into the affairs of the new government, specifically the reform of the armed forces which the past government approved and we have commenced implementation.
“Basically, some of them are the establishment of an Octagon, like the Pentagon in America; improve civil-military relations to enhance security in the country; and support the government’s deep blue economy initiative. We shall continue to work along with sister security agencies to ensure peace in the Niger Delta and drastic reduction in oil theft.
“We are committed to supporting the economy of this country through the military industrial complex. The governments through the Defence Industry corporation of Nigeria is billed the NASS which is about to become an Act that will see to the establishment of a military industrial complex,” the perm sec noted.