Nigeria: Insecurity - Nigeria in 'State of Emergency', Buhari Tells New Service Chiefs

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari (file image).
27 January 2021

The appointment of the service chiefs was announced on Tuesday.

President Muhammadu Buhari has charged the newly appointed service chiefs to be patriotic and serve Nigeria wholeheartedly

Mr Buhari stated this at a meeting with the new appointees at the Presidential Villa on Wednesday.

The appointees are the Chief of Defence Staff, Lucky Irabor, a major general; Chief of Army Staff, Ibrahim Attahiru, a major general, Chief of Naval Staff, Auwal Gambo, a rear admiral and Chief of Air Staff Isiaka Amao, an air vice-marshal.

It was the president's first meeting with the service chiefs who were appointed on Tuesday.

They were led to the meeting, which was held behind closed doors, by the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magashi, a retired major general.

According to a statement by presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina, the president urged the new appointees to be loyal to the country, adding that the country was in a state of emergency.

"We're in a state of emergency. Be patriotic, serve the country well, as your loyalty is to the country," Mr Buhari said.

The statement further said Mr Buhari congratulated them on their new roles and pledged his support to the armed forces.

He was quoted as saying, "There's nothing I can tell you about the service, because you are in it. I was also in it, and I will pray for you. I also assure you that whatever I can do as Commander-in-Chief will be done, so that the people will appreciate your efforts.

"You know the stage we were in 2015, you know the stage we are now, and the undertakings we made. We promised to secure the country, revive the economy, and fight corruption. None has been easy, but we have certainly made progress."

The president emphasised the need to boost the morale of soldiers. He also pledged to do more in the aspects of equipment and logistics, adding that soldiers should be made to feel physically and professionally secure.

Below is the full statement:

STATE HOUSE PRESS RELEASE

PRESIDENT BUHARI CHARGES NEW SERVICE CHIEFS

President Muhammadu Buhari Wednesday afternoon met with the newly appointed Service Chiefs, charging them to be patriotic, and serve the country well.

His words: "We're in a state of emergency. Be patriotic, serve the country well, as your loyalty is to the country."

The President congratulated the Service Chiefs on heading their various services, adding:

"There's nothing I can tell you about the service, because you are in it. I was also in it, and I will pray for you. I also assure you that whatever I can do as Commander-in-Chief will be done, so that the people will appreciate your efforts.

"You know the stage we were in 2015, you know the stage we are now, and the undertakings we made. We promised to secure the country, revive the economy, and fight corruption. None has been easy, but we have certainly made progress."

President Buhari also charged the Service Chiefs to be concerned about the morale of their officers and men, saying they should be made to feel physically and professionally secure. He pledged that Government would do its best in terms of equipment and logistics.

The Service Chiefs, who were led to the meeting by the Minister of Defence, Major-General Bashir Magashi (retd), are: Major-General LEO Irabor, Chief of Defence Staff; Major-General I. Attahiru, Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral AZ Gambo, Chief of Naval Staff; and Air Vice-Marshal IO Amao, Chief of Air Staff.

Femi Adesina

Special Adviser to the President

(Media & Publicity)

January 27, 2021

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