Few soldiers’ misconduct giving military bad image –DHQ
The Defence headquarters on Saturday expressed concern over the spate at which misconducts of some soldiers in recent times were giving the public wrong perception about the Nigerian military.
The DHQ also appealed to the public not to use the action of a few soldiers to generalise and paint the Nigerian military in a bad light. It described such as products of frustrations and personal challenges.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin, who was represented by the Chief of Defence Civil/military Corporation, Rear Admiral Obed Ngalabak, stated this when he led some top officers of the various arms of the Nigerian military on a visit to a business mogul and founder of Ned Nwoko Foundation, Prince Ned Nwoko, in Abuja.
To correct the negative perception about the military, the DHQ has entered into a collaboration with the NNF to create awareness to civil populace.
Ngalabak said, “The Chief of Defence Staff has asked that we meet you because the civilmilitary relation is bad, it needs to be brought together and a person like you will go a long way to support this project.
“Sometimes, it is because of the challenges they themselves are having; they are frustrated and they have no way of letting it out and so sometimes, they behave like that but that is not saying that is who we are, it is not everybody.”
While thanking Nwoko for his determination to end malaria in Nigeria and Africa in general, he appealed to the philanthropist to take the battle against malaria in another form.
he said, “Malaria actually kills more than AIDS and other sicknesses that we are aware of.
“The fight is very heartwarming and the Chief of Defence Staff is aware of it but we want you to fight another malaria in another form; the civil/military relationship.
“The civil/military relations department was created because we realised that the military is always doing things in isolation and there is the need for the people we are fighting for to know what we are doing.
“We have not taken time to explain to our sisters and brothers what we are doing, that is why we are doing what we are doing and we think that it is necessary for us to do that.”
Responding, Nwoko said, “When I was in the house of Representatives, I was a member of the Committee on Defence and so we worked very closely with them. We did a lot with them and it is only a foolish person that doesn’t understand the importance of the work the military is doing.
“I particularly feel happy that there is a new department created to deal with civilians\ military relationship, to make them understand that you are a part and parcel of all of us. It is like the police and community policing. I will play my role not just now but it will be a continuous role.
“The fight against malaria means a lot to me. We are looking at eradicating malaria in Africa starting with Nigeria. There are 54 countries in Africa, six of them are already malaria-free and we are trying to do what they did. The first step is that we will fumigate Nigeria. It involves everyone because every home, every environment has to be fumigated.”
•L-R: Past Presidents, Eko Club, Mr Mutiu Gbajumo, Alhaji Babs Andoyi, Chief Rasheed Alaba-williams; and President, Dr Shamsudeen Ade-dosunmu, during the New Year Dance of the club in Lagos... on Sunday. Photo: Goke Famadewa