Ibrahim Babangida, former military president, has submitted that the Nigerian army needs more intelligence to unmask sponsors of Boko haram insurgents in the country.
He stated this while speaking on a current affairs programme on Channels Television, Newsnight, hosted by Ladi Akeredolu Ale.
However, Babangida, faulted the decision by South-west governors to launch regional security outfits in their domains, which he described as unviable.
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the former military president said that if what he reads in the media was true, a lot still needs to be done to end insurgency in the North-east, stressing that unmasking those sponsoring the insurgents is key to defeating them.
He said: ”I think a lot needs to be done quite frankly because if what we read in the papers and hear on radio is true, in most of those areas that we assumed that the security situation has been stabilised; I read in the papers that the young governor of Borno State telling the defence minister that there are still a few places that people can’t go in the state. He said so because that, at least, will give the military high command some way of thinking. The governor is the security officer of the state and he knows the people.
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”There are a lot of challenges, what they need to do is to get a lot of intelligence information. It looks to me that there are people who are thinking for the insurgents. There are people who think for them. And the thinking is we need to find out who are the people thinking for them, who are leading them and who are even supplying them with weapons and ammunition and put a stop to that. That is probably the way I access it.”
While reiterating his earlier position that the military is overstretched, he noted that for the police to take over the internal security of the country, they should be well trained and equipped.
On the recently launched of “Operation Amotekun” by the Southwest governors, Babangida doubted the viability of the initiative, hinging his position on the inability of the states to properly equip the outfits.
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Asked whether he thinks the security outfit will be viable, he replied: ”I will say no. Now the governors are quarrelling over minimum wage and creating another force that is going to be a problem for the state governors in terms of the welfare of those to be engaged and the materials except if they can convince the federal government to provide the resources, I can understand.”