Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has joined the growing army of prominent Nigerians and organizations pressing the obviously unwilling President Muhammadu Buhari, to pull out the service chiefs from Nigeria’s Defence Headquarters.
Governor Wike who was speaking in Port Harcourt, the state capital on Friday during the wreath laying and parade ceremony to mark the 2021 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration said the time has come for President Buhari to allow new service chiefs to inject fresh ideas and strategy in tackling internal insecurity threats in Nigeria.According to the outspoken Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governor, ‘’Boko Haram, bandits and killer herdsmen have continued to overrun communities, randomly killing and abducting helpless people. These insurgents have also destroyed private and public property with relative ease, and it is time for the Federal Government to take decisive action and end such menace.
Wike however, acknowledged efforts made so far by the overstaying security chiefs in the battle against insurgents, noting that despite full military engagement with Boko Haram and the killer bandits, the threats appear to be overwhelming the country’s security agencies.“A country is as strong as its Armed Forces. Her inability to defeat the Boko Haram insurgency despite years of full military engagement shows that all is not well with our approaches and commitments to the battle against the internal insecurity.“It therefore, raises the need for all of us to be worried by the deteriorating security situation across the country. The federal government should do everything necessary to bring the security threat by Boko Haram and armed bandits to a decisive end in the shortest possible time.“We thank the service chiefs for their efforts so far in the battle against the insurgents. But, we are also aligning with the concern of citizens that having reached their wit’s end seemingly, they should now give way for fresh hands and ideas to give the fight the impetus that it so strongly needs to ensure that Boko Haram and killer bandits are comprehensively defeated and smoked out of existence.“The time has come for the federal government to stop the pretence, change strategy, seek help from our friends and confront the urgency of the internal insecurity situation in Nigeria with every weaponry at its disposal to stop the killing, free all hostages and improve the physical security of our country for all Nigerians”, Wike said.While saying Nigerians are gracious beneficiaries of the various sacrifices made by the armed forces as they put their life on the line to defend the country, the governor adds, ‘’the least duty every Nigerian owe our soldiers, veterans, and their families is to continue to remember, honour and celebrate them for their extraordinary courage in service and sacrifice to the country.“On this solemn day and occasion, we join the rest of our country to honour and pay tribute to all our soldiers who died at the various battlefields in the service of our nation. We also salute and honour every serving member of the armed forces carrying on today in the noble tradition of those before them dutifully defending our nation’s territorial integrity.“They are fighting to keep us safe and secured in the face of insurgencies from Boko Haram, Bandits and other criminal elements threatening our peace and security across the country. Our beloved country is still together, existing and waxing stronger as one indivisible, free, and democratic country because of your commitment and sacrifice to its unity and progress.“As Nigerians, our collective desire is to have a country where we can all live in unity, freedom and security. A country where our children and grandchildren can live in relative comfort and strive for a brighter future”, he said.Governor Wike then reiterated the need to have an enduring reward system for officers and men of the security forces to encourage them in their sacrifices to the country, pointing out that his administration has continued to implement such financial support policy for security personnel of Rivers origin because of the importance it places on the selfless sacrifices they are making to keep Nigeria united and in peace.“No amount of recompense can adequately assuage the loss of precious lives or the disabling effects of permanent bodily injuries. But we shall never cease to accord profound honour that you deserve and cannonise your bravery and patriotism at all times in expression of our gratitude for what you truly represent.
“It is for this reason that we have since adopted and implemented the policy framework that guarantees some financial support to the immediate families of any soldier from Rivers that pays the supreme price or suffers permanent disability at the battlefields in the course of his or her service to our nation. “We have also fulfilled and continue to fulfill our promises and commitments to our veterans through the Rivers Chapter of Nigeria Legion. Two days ago, we released the sum of N70 million to the chapter”, Governor Wike said.