Posted by Kingsley Nwezeh, Abuja | 11 November 2018 | 1,717 times
Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai, Friday warned troops fighting insurgents in the North-east to shun acts of cowardice or face court-martial.
Buratai gave the warning in a goodwill message to troops in the frontline in the North-East, released in Abuja Friday. The army chief issued the warning as he disclosed that the recent large consignment of ammunition procured by the army was being “injected” into the theatre of war.
“The Nigerian Army is not known for cowardly behavior. We have contained several incursions and several security challenges bedeviling our dear country within the last three years and now would not be an exception.
“Consequently, any soldier that turns away in the face of enemy incursion would be appropriately sanctioned and made to face field court martial in accordance with our extant laws.
“As you are all aware; the consequences could be grave. Do not be complacent by being contented with repelling their attacks, instead, go after them, capture them, and when absolutely necessary, be decisive with the daring ones.
“Some women and children have been held captive, you are therefore to ensure that adequate rules of engagement are employed to extricate them before any offensive action”, he warned.
Buratai said the army had begun to inject high caliber ammunition into the war and noted that as army chief he was committed to the welfare of troops.
“As your Chief of Army Staff, (COAS), I have never relented in my pursuits of ensuring that your welfare is adequately catered for. To this end, I have directed that your allowances are paid regularly as and when due. I have also directed that troops’ rotation be carried out as scheduled.
“As soldiers in battle, I am aware of the effects of battle fatigue. Consequently, I have also directed that passes be issued to officers and soldiers that require same to visit their families. Recall that I approved the special promotion of more than 5000 troops for gallantry. Be rest assured that the process is continuous. Your kitting has also been improved drastically. Special uniform allowance was paid a month ago directly into your individual accounts.
“Through the various intervention programmes to the NA by the government, the stock of arms and ammunition has greatly improved. Just recently, the NA took delivery of large consignment of high caliber weapons and ammunition.
“These are already being injected into the theatre. I therefore urge you to make use of them judiciously and ensure they are effectively used against the terrorists and not taken away by them”, he said.
•Excerpted from THISDAY report
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