By SUMAILA OGBAJE
ABUJA- A Security Expert and Secretary, International Institute of Professional Security (IIPS), Mr Abdullahi Jabi, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for ensuring increased funding for the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
Jabi, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja said the N1.35 trillion earmarked for defence in the 2023 budget proposal before the National Assembly was commendable.
He said the allocation to defence was slightly higher than education and health, adding “the chunk is expected to cater for personnel overhead.
According to him, it is a very healthy one because the emergence of insecurity in the country has taken a new dimension that is threatening our peaceful coexistence.
He said the insecurity had set the nation backward by 20 years in terms of actual productivity, human and property safety.
“As such, for us to motivate our forces to be positioned to defend the country, they need to be encouraged.
“So, I am not too much against it even if it is going for recurrent expenditure to motivate them in terms of training and retraining and then getting them prepared to combat the enemies of state.
“But my prayer is that we should not allow political decisions to influence the security expenditures.
“Occasionally, you observed that wherever such money is made available at the managerial level, the funds most times don’t get to the right people.
“These are people fighting for Nigeria on the battlefield, using their energy, their life, their skills in ensuring that they defeat criminals who are making the country ungovernable.
“So, not only giving them money for recurrent at that level, but must ensure that they are properly dispensed to the rightful beneficiaries.
“And we begin to see these successes in tandem with what they have achieved in recent times,” he said.
The security expert said the recent successes in the fight against insecurity were a paradigm shift from the old order.
He urged the military hierarchy to maintain the momentum to ensure that they wipe out the enemies of state from Nigeria.
Jabi also urged more inclusion of private security organisations in the management of security in Nigeria.
According to him, the strengths of the armed forces are diminishing because they are almost victim of this war.
“Some of them have lived their life in succession order and we are not recapitalising them to match strength for strength with enemies of state.
“What we need to do now is that they can leverage on industrial security operators and private security practitioners to ensure that there is synergy in terms of intelligence gathering and information dissemination.
“To sustain the successes of the war we are fighting now, we cannot equally rely 100 per cent on kinetic actions in fighting the enemies of state.
“We need to look at other alternative measures to ensure that they will get results and the citizens must be forthcoming in giving out some information to relevant security agencies so that they can process it and make use of such.’’
According to him, synergy is very key in bridging the gap of the losses they are recording in the battlefield.
Jabi also advocated massive deployment of technology to enhance the stability of the combat officers in the warfront so as to give them an edge against the enemies.
“ Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor has also reiterated the commitment of the armed forces to procure more equipment that will help them reduce collateral damage within the rank and file of the armed forces on the battlefield.’’
He said there was the need to also invest more in space technology to ensure that the criminals were dealt with. (NAN)