By Sumaila Ogbaje
Abuja – The Joint Senate and House of Representatives Committee on Army has lauded the leadership of the Nigerian Army for the commitment of personnel to professionalism in the discharge of their duties.
Sen. Ali Ndume, Chairman, Senate Committee on Army and Mr Abdulrazak Namdas, Chairman House of Representatives Committee on Army, stated this during a visit to Army Headquarters on Tuesday in Abuja.
Ndume said that the committee’s visit was a continuation of their oversight assignment to various army formations across the country to carry out assessment needs of the army.
He said that there was need for the joint committee to robustly engage with the leadership of the army in order to address their challenges.
Ndume said that the committee was pleased with the various improvements being recorded by the army in terms of personnel conduct and commitment to tackling the security challenges in the country.
”We are here to have a close discussion to map out the way forward and what you require from us and we will do the constitutional responsibility that is required on us.
“For what we have seen so far, we are very proud of the Nigerian army. What we have seen in Zaria, Maiduguri, everywhere and the report we have received is very encouraging.
“We are proud of you and we will continue to give you the support and you should not relent in your effort until you see that Nigerian army goes back to where it used to be,” he said.
Namdas commended the army for looking inward for some of its equipment needs through the Defence Industry Cooperation of Nigeria (DICON).
He urged the army authorities to continue to exploit the potentials and capabilities of its engineers to boost its equipment needs.
Namdas said that the national assembly would continue to support the army by ensuring that they are given special consideration.
“We are very proud of what is on ground and the level of professionalism of the Nigerian soldiers.
“We have seen how you have independently tried to source for MRAPs and others machines on your own and if you can look inward, that means that we are going places,” he said.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, assured the committee that the Nigerian army would continue to uphold the constitution of Nigeria.
Buratai said that what the committee had seen in different formations was a true reflection of what the current Nigerian army represents.
He said that the army had embarked on a number of projects across its barracks nationwide to ensure that its officers and soldiers and their families lived in a befitting accommodation.
Buratai further disclosed that the authorities had invested a lot in the training of its personnel both locally and internationally as well as other local training exercises to enhance their capabilities.
He commended the national assembly for considering additional sources of funding for the armed forces, adding that all the activities of the army require serious funding.
“Be rest assured that the Nigerian army will remain loyal to the constitution and will support you to carry out your oversight functions.
“We will also ensure that our constitutional responsibilities are professionally conducted and what you saw really is a true reflection of Nigerian army of today.
“They are professional, they are committed, they are discipline, they are loyal and we have taken bold steps not only in expanding the Nigerian army in terms of its order of battles; new formations and units have been created.”