By Chuks Oyema-Aziken
Former Chief of Defence Staff, General Martin Luther Agwai, has called for a more coordinated approach in the war against insurgency.
To this end he called for a National Security Coordinator to coordinate all aspects of security.
Agwai, who spoke in Abuja on Tuesday as the keynote speaker at the three-day international conference on “Insurgency and Counter insurgency in Nigeria: Critical Perspectives on Boko Haram’’, said the National Security Coordinator will coordinate the security agencies and report to the Commander-in-Chief.
He condenmed rivalry and competition among the various arms of the security agencies.
“There is competition, everybody want to talk to the President,” he said.
He also called for constant rotation of soldiers fighting insurgency in the north east, saying they should not spend more than maximum of two years in the war theatre.
He said: “If you have taken somebody to a theatre, you know the challenges. There is no sleep because when the enemy is coming, he doesn’t tell you which way he would take.
“You have kept somebody on his toes for a long period. Two years to me is the maximum but after that, the person will fail, inefficiency will set in, and he would have challenges of thinking about his family and his loved ones.
“If you just station them too long in the theatre, the animal in human beings will come out. And that is why you will see people reacting out of worry’’.
In his remarks, the Executive Director, VSF, Prof. Sunday Ochoche, said VSF is a multi-dimensional response to a— national tragedy of monumental proportion.
He said: “the Fund has diligently intervened in five thematic areas prioritised by the CVSF: Education and Foster care, Livelihood and Recovery, Health support, Research and Peacebuilding, and Reconstruction of public infrastructure.
In an opening address read on his behalf by the National Security Adviser, Major-General Babagana Monguno, Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo lauded the achievements of VSF, calling on other bodies to come to the aid of victims of insurgency.
The Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, lamented the destruction to lives and properties caused by the crisis in the region, saying his people do not have access to their farmlands any longer.
He also appealed to the Federal government and the Military to create an enabling environment for his people to go back to their farm land.
“I am appealing to the military and others to create an enabling environment that will allow the citizens to go back to their farm land’’, Zulum said.
The conference was jointly organised by the Victims Support Fund, Abuja and the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna.