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COAS Cautions Troops Against Politicking Ahead Of 2023 Polls

The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, has warned troops of the Nigerian Army to avoid being dragged into politicking ahead of the 2023 general election.

The COAS spoke yesterday in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, at a three-day Second Senior Command and Leadership Seminar for commanders of various formations across the country.

The seminar, with the theme: Building the Capacity of Nigerian Army to Meet Contemporary Security Challenges in a Joint Environment: The Role of Senior Leadership, was attended by military commanders from across the country.

Yahaya said no personnel would be allowed to participate in the elections or support any candidate, as stipulated by the extant laws guarding the service.

“So, I want to remind all commanders that as the electioneering season approaches, the political landscape is likely to become tenser across the geopolitical zones.

“Engagement of political thugs, use of hate speeches and other inimical activities by desperate politicians and their supporters will likely instigate a more fragile security situation in the coming days.

“I charge commanders at all levels to ensure that troops under their commands are adequately enlightened on the need to be apolitical and eschew all political vices.

“To this end, all army personnel must act within the ambit of the law, the provisions of the extant rule of engagement and code of conduct for the elections in 2023,” he said.

Yahaya said the army would adopt a more superior system of operation to harness the collective potentials of all security stakeholders in the coming days and weeks.

The COAS explained that the seminar was organised to brainstorm and proffer solutions to challenges confronting ongoing operations across the country.

“Our current operating environment is dynamic and has continued to expose new threats which require deeper insights to successfully overcome them.

“So, the forum offers senior commanders the opportunity to engage one another and introspect on our existing operational model to identify gaps.

“Resource persons invited, including academic practitioners, security and intelligence experts, retired officers and social media influencers, will contribute ideas towards addressing national security challenges,” he added.

Yahaya said the army under his command was passionate at ensuring that troops were adequately trained, equipped and motivated to perform their constitutional roles in support of the Federal Government.

The General Officer Commanding (GOC) of 6 Division of the Nigeria Army, Port Harcourt, Maj.-Gen. Olufemi Oluyede, said the seminar was also organised to expose senior officers to how to protect the image of the army.

According to him, the participating senior officers are drawn from Army Headquarters and all army formations in the Southwest, Southsouth and Southeast.

“This seminar is organised, considering that our contemporary threat and operating environment demand astute and innovative leadership competences from our commanders,” he said.

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