At last, President Muhammadu Buhari finally bowed to pressure from Nigerians and on Tuesday, accepted the resignation of the ex-service chiefs and appointed new ones.
The move to remove the heads of the security outfits was seen by many, as long over-due, considering the late action the President had taken. Many Nigerians had posited that the security situation in the country had worsened because, according to them, the ex-service chiefs were exhaustive of operational strategies.
In this piece, The Voice’s VICTOR BAJAH, LUCY ACKANYON, SUNDAY IDUH, VIVIAN AGBO, ESTHER AKAA, JOVITTA IORSHASHE and FAITH IGBUDU sampled different reactions on the development.
“Buhari has responded to the yearnings of Nigerians by the removal of the service chiefs. However, the removal of the service chiefs would not just solve the security challenges facing the country. The President should move to the next stage, by addressing other security challenges such as inadequate equipment and shortage of manpower.
(Mr Terkura Ukula, a public affairs analyst)
The removal of the Service Chiefs takes longtime before coming. The country could have had to contain with resistance from junior officers, if the service chiefs’ tenure was elongated any further.
Younger officers were aggrieved, and such things could cause coup. In service, there is retirement age which the service chiefs have attained.
Nigerians are looking forward to seeing what the new service chiefs would bring on board. I advice the new appointees to be proactive and make the country proud.
(Mr Samuel Inja, civil servant)
Commenting on the issue of the removal of service chiefs Mrs Alache Ochai, Senior Special Assistant to the governor on entertainment, said the removal of the service chiefs was long expected. She said it would have been done a long time ago due to the spate of insecurity in the country, and the inability of the service chiefs to tackle the situation. She however expressed optimism that the new service chiefs would tackle the insecurity in the country while Nigerians would keep their fingers crossed to watch their performance.
(Mrs Alache Ochai, government appointee)
It is a welcome development as Nigerians had insisted on the removal of the removed service chiefs since the later days of Buhari’s 1st tenure. I just hoped the new ones will perform, giving the complicated nature of the Nigerian security situation. People have complained of the new service chiefs’ abilities but the truth is, they would be acting according to dictates.
(Mr Henry Vambe, business man)
The removal of the former service chiefs was long overdue but it is a welcome development.
The former service chiefs had since lost strategies to handle insurgency and terrorism in the country but political and parochial interests kept them in office at the detriment of national security, and public interest.
Regular review of strategies is key to any nation that would want to win war against insurgents, and ensure national growth and development.
The former service chiefs were left in office to sustain political interests, even as their strategies were not yielding good results. I believe they, were not ready to be in office up to the time of their romoval, but anyways, their going is appropriate.
One can imagine how there was rise in banditry in the country and new hands were not allowed to come in. That is dangerous to national survival and especially of Nigeria’s image in the international community. The high cost of living can be traced to insecurity and it is necessary the government allow fresh ideas into security architecture to bring social- economic reforms.
Particularly, the new Chief of Defence Staff is known for success in all his military engagements. He is a veteran warrior who has gained success in fighting Boko Haram and insurgency in the country and will want to sustain it.
I advise him to bring out workable solution to the numerous insecurity issues. He should mobilise other service chiefs to make sure peace is restored. Political and parochial interests should not becloud his strategies which, if allowed to, can threaten national security.
(Abraham Emmanuel, youth leader)
“It is a good development and I am sure this would boost the morale of the military in the battle ground. It’s also important to note that the President has by his action listened to the wishes and expectations of many Nigerians who had several times urged him to sack the service chiefs and appoint new ones. We are hoping to see many innovations, new strategies and better military combats that could lead to end of insurgency, banditry and incessant kidnappings in the country.
(Barr Abdullahi Ubandoma Abdullahi, legal practitioner)
The new appointments were long overdue. However, I am surprised the President appointed a Chief of Army Staff who, in the past, had failed to carry out his duties against Boko Haram. The coming days would determine if these appointments were worth it by the quality of their work, and especially, their progress in the fight against insurgency especially in the North East. I just wonder what the President’s motive is, for taking so long to replace the service chiefs, when their tenure of office had expired long ago.
(Mr Sam Adans, civil servant)
I hope that politicians allow the new service chiefs to do their work professionally. The ineffectiveness of the past security chiefs was as a result of their submission to politics. I call on the federal government to allow the new service chiefs do their work as professionally granted by the constitution, without any political influence. The military is polarised by tribal and ethnic issues affecting their performance. In spite of the huge sums of money voted for security by the federal government, insecurity is on the increase. I therefore plead with the new service chiefs to act professionally and serve the nation in the interest of all Nigerians.
(Mr Oseni Idris, mechanic)
I commend the boldness of President Buhari to yield to the desires of Nigerians. I am optimistic that the new service chiefs will bring on board their wealth of experience, which would give the fight against insurgency a boost by applying new methods of security approach. Also, I call on the federal government to give the new service chiefs the needed assistance to overcome all the security challenges faced by the country.
(David Loho, civil servant)
It is a welcome development but is long overdue. Well, it is alright because sometimes when someone has done a particular work for so long, the spirit of laxity may set-in. So, I think changing of baton is okay and very important. We expect the service chiefs to do something more, even as they continue from where the former ones stopped. They should do more so that the issue of insecurity in our country will be a thing of the past. By giving a more fight, Nigerians can sleep with all eyes closed, ply the roads peacefully and without security hitches.
(Mr Teryila Atsorough, nurse)