Lieutenant-General Ibrahim Attahiru, the Chief of Army Staff, has insisted that the Nigerian Army cannot effectively tackle the rising level of insecurity across the country without adequate weapons.
Attahiru stated this when the Senate Committee on Army, led by its Chairman, Senator Ali Ndume visited the Army headquarters, Abuja, on Wednesday as part of oversight functions.
The COAS urged the National Assembly members to, as a matter of urgency, consider these critical needs as they appropriate funds.
He said: “To curb and finally defeat these threats, the Nigerian Army requires equipment, weapons, armour fighting vehicles, platforms and various combat enablers.
“As we all know, Nigeria is faced with a lot of security challenges that include insurgency in the North East, banditry in the North West and part of North Central as well as secessionist agitations in the South East and South-South geo-political zones of the country.
“I urge you to, as a matter of urgency, consider these critical needs as you legislate and appropriate funds. I will be counting on your support so that we can efficiently perform our constitutional roles and defeat all our threats.”
According to the army chief, the visit was timely “because it affords us the opportunity to interact and discuss issues that would impact on the funding of Nigerian Army activities and operations while also strengthening the cordial relationship between the National Assembly and Army headquarters”.
Attahiru commended the Chairman and members of the Senate Committee on Army for their support during the process leading to his confirmation as the Chief of Army Staff.
He also pledged that the army under his leadership will be apolitical and committed to the protection of democracy and good governance in Nigeria.
In his remarks, Senator Ndume Ndume said the purpose of the visit was to have a close understanding of the issues and needs of the Nigerian Army and to find a way to address them.
The federal lawmaker emphasised that the National Assembly plays an important in terms of giving the necessary legislative support to the military, adding that the legislature will correct the anomalies of the defence allocation in the 2021 budget.
“Fortunately, we understand that the supplementary budget will be laid before the National Assembly to take care of some of the loopholes and lapses that we saw in the 2021 budget and knowing the new security challenges that we are facing in various regions,” Ndume said.