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The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, said the army had commenced massive recruitment to tackle the security challenge in the country.
Ihejirika said this while opening a five-day seminar organised by the army’s Department of Civil-Military Affairs at the 2 Div. Odogbo, Ibadan on Monday.
“I have commenced the recruitment of 9,000 persons in our various training institutions”, Ihejirika said.
The COAS, represented by Maj. Gen. John Ewansiha, said the objective of the seminar was to foster better working relations with civil society organisations toward winning hearts and minds.
Ihejirika reiterated the intention of the army to train and retrain its officers in order to meet the security challenge of the country.
“Indeed, the Nigerian army is currently occupied with domestic challenges in several parts of the country, especially in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States”, he said.
The Chief of Civil-Military Affairs, Maj. Gen. Bola Koleoso, said the seminar was part of the quests to resolve the crisis currently facing the nation.
“As we all know, the civil society organisations stand for the defence of human rights everywhere as well as in crisis situations.
“The military aims at defeating insurgents as well as protecting law-abiding citizens”, he said.
Gov. Abiola Ajimobi, who was the guest of honour, stressed the need for constant engagement and discussion between the civil and military publics.
“The modus operandi of the military is force; obedience to order and immediacy of that obedience. The modus operandi of the civil public is persuasion and constant engagement, which takes time”, he said.
Ajimobi said the task of such relationship should thus be how to bring the two publics together to pursue same agenda for the democratic vision of the nation.
“The Nigerian civil public cannot afford to stand aloof from the military.
“Since independence, the military has fought wars toward the sustenance of Nigeria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
“It has lost thousands of its men who are martyrs of the peace and nationhood we enjoy today.
“We cannot but support the military in its quest to protect the nation and her territorial borders”, the governor said.
The theme of the seminar is: “Consolidating Civil Society Organisations/Military Relations for Improved National Security.” (NAN)