Reporter : CHRISTIAN NWANGENE
A cross section of respondents in Enugu has described the change of service chiefs as long overdue, considering the worsening security situation in the country and numerous calls for their removal.
They expressed the view while reacting to the appointment of new service chiefs by the President.
One of them and Anglican Archbishop of Enugu Ecclesiastical Province, the Most Reverend Emmanuel Chukwuma, urged the new chiefs to be professional in the discharge of their duties and develop new approach to end insurgency as soon as possible.
Archbishop Chukwuma, called for more air surveillance and intensified checks at all the country’s borders and interstates to check influx of individuals that often constitute security threat.
“We’re expecting more from the Airforce, because ground fighting may not be too effective now because most of these kidnappers, and bandits can be fought seriously from the air.
“And if they can put into serious use all the equipment that have been acquired for the Airforce, I’m quite sure fighting from the air will be very much strategic and quickly,” the Archbishop suggested.
For the Chairman, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Ezeagu Branch, Mr. Nnadiume Awforkansi, the replacement of the service chiefs was belated.
He, however, observed that every region of the country should have been considered in the appointment.
“We desire serious appointment in the hierarchy of the ladder, as small as Commissioners of Police, how many southeast people are Commissioners of Police?
“Let’s even leave Inspector General of Police, let’s also look at the army cantonments and divisions: how many of them are manned by people from the southeast?
“We need to carry everybody along in this country,” the NBA Chairman stated.
Mr. Awforkansi urged the new service Chiefs to respect human rights in their rules of engagement.
Another respondent and Archbishop of Enugu Archdiocese, Methodist Church Nigeria, the Most Reverend Christopher Ede, said he was satisfied with the change of the service chiefs and commended President Muhammadu Buhari for listening to the voice of the people.
The Most Reverend Ede, urged the new service chiefs to integrate technology in their strategy to reduce insecurity to the barest minimum.
“These days security is no longer a matter of presence, it is a matter of intelligence and technology has given us the opportunity to be able to track crimes before it happens.
“Let’s not continue to be analogue in the way we are pursing these things.
“Let us follow the new trend and then bring peace to Nigeria and security,” Archbishop Edeh said.
Archbishop Ede, advised the new service chiefs to see Nigeria as one, and ensure that every threat to security in the country was nipped in the bud.
Also, the Founder, Leadnetwork, Mr. Chukwuma Ephraim Okenwa, stressed the importance of intelligence gathering in tackling insecurity in the country.
Mr. Okenwa said competence and qualification should always be the major criteria for such appointments.
He was particularly disturbed that the service chiefs were disengaged not based on their performance in handling of insurgency, banditry and other security issues confronting the country, in spite attaining the mandatory retirement period, but claiming that they were removed on the outcry of Nigerians for such change to be made.
“They are only responding to that based on out cries of Nigerians and not based on the proactivity of the leadership, which is one of the hallmarks of leadership world over.
“Your ability to assess performance not merely on people’s outcry, but based on the indices,” Mr. Okenwa stated.
The respondents expressed optimism that acts of insurgency, banditry and other criminalities would drastically reduce in record time as the new service chiefs bring in fresh ideas.