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Terrorism, banditry, kidnapping, others posing challenges to Nigeria’s democracy, says Defence Minister

Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi (rtd.) on Friday said that the increased insecurity in Nigeria especially terrorism, kidnapping, insurgency and ethnic religion crises are posing major challenges for the nation’s democracy.

General Magashi, who spoke at the graduation ceremony of 13 officers of the Air Force War College Course 7/2021 held at the NAF Officers Mess, Makurdi, Benue State, also explained that the growing insecurity across the country is the reason for the deployment of the Armed Forces of Nigeria personnel in Internal Security Operations (ISOs).

The Minister however, commended the efforts of the military, particularly, the Nigerian Air Force at focusing on doctrinal developments to address the security challenges confronting the country.

Magashi was represented by the director of military affairs, Federal Ministry of Defence, Sunday Musa, who said: “Our country is currently experiencing different forms of security challenges, these include terrorism, insurgency, armed banditry and kidnapping. Similarly, our democracy is also being tested by ethno-religion crises as well as incidents of farmer/herders conflicts.

The Minister noted that the administration of President Muhammad Buhari has continued to support the military, citing the recent induction of new platforms including the JF-17 Thunder and the A-29 Super Tucano aircraft were part of the efforts put in place to decisively end the security challenges.

While commending the Armed Forces of Nigeria and security agencies for their commitment to face security challenges, the Minister urged all personnel to continue to strive towards excellence and professionalism.

According to General Magashi, “the changing nature of warfare poses new challenges to security forces. Threats by non-state armed actors are on the rise, creating a significantly more complex strategic environment both at the global and regional levels.

“Your calling demands integrity, dedication, loyalty and a high standard of discipline in the discharge of your duties. Indeed, you have demonstrated all these qualities to a commendable extent, so I can only urge you not to rest on your oars.”

Speaking at the event, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao explained that the Air Force War College which is the highest professional military training institution in the NAF, plays a significant role in fostering purposeful training and human capacity development which is one of the key drivers of his vision.

Air Marshal Amao stated: “Indeed, the NAF, like any other organization, cannot satisfactorily fulfil its statutory mandate to justify its continued existence without qualitative skilled manpower which is a critical requirement for attaining professionalism.”

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