President Bola Tinubu on Friday in Kaduna said Nigeria and the neighbouring countries in the Lake Chad region must display courage in reforming their military doctrine and change tactics to effectively fight insecurity.
The President noted that the change in tactics had become necessary because the countries in the region were battling a “mobile and elusive irregular force” that disregarded established rules of warfare.
Tinubu stated this at the graduation ceremony of Senior Course 45 of the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji, in Kaduna State.
The President pointed out that the adversaries facing countries in the sub-region were not conventional armies engaging in traditional battlefield warfare.
The Nigerian leader, who encouraged African countries to work together against common threats, acknowledged the multinational efforts of Nigeria, Cameroon, the Niger Republic, and Chad to bring peace to the Lake Chad region.
He reinforced his message that collaboration should serve as a commendable example to be emulated and improved on wherever necessary.
”We must also be brave enough to reform military doctrine and practice. We do not face a conventional army in the traditional field of battle. No, we contend against mobile, elusive irregular forces that disdain the normal rules of warfare.
”We must adjust accordingly to subdue the menace. This shall require a change in mindset, strategy, and tactics in equipment and gear.
The president also used the occasion to spell out his National Security Objective, saying it would focus on ensuring security, justice, and democratic prosperity through state power.
While acknowledging the commitment of the immediate-past government in enhancing the combat readiness of the Nigerian Armed Forces, the President pledged to “pick up the pace,” by providing the necessary support to the military.
”As Commander-in-Chief, I have given myself the following charge: to deploy the entire machinery of state power to ensure the security of our people and property in a just and democratic society.
”Under my predecessor, the Armed Forces worked tirelessly toward necessary reforms to enhance combat effectiveness and operational capability. We must now pick up the pace,” he said.
Tinubu described the role of the armed forces in combatting Africa’s greatest challenge of violence and exploitation as crucial, urging them to defend the continent from geopolitical changes and resource competition.
”We live in a moment of flux. Geopolitical change is afoot. Old alliances and assumptions are being tested as new ones are being shaped. Trade and global economic activity are fast, yet fragile and easily disrupted by war, weather, or pandemic.
”Underlying it all is the often unspoken but urgent competition for precious resources. Water, food, gold, oil, and other items have all been placed in the contest. In too many instances, the contest turns violent.
”Areas that should blossom into economic prosperity and hope become factories of pillage and oppression. In Africa, this condition is perhaps our greatest challenge and harshest injustice.
”Your role in combating this grave evil is crucial. For we call on you to defend not only our land and resources but our people and their democratic existence. Your training was sculpted to fit the imperatives of our times,” the President told the 291 graduating officers.”