Banking system hinders tracking of terrorists’ funds, says Defence Chief
CHIEF of Defence Intelligence (CDI), Rear Admiral Gabriel Okoi has said the Nigerian banking system impedes tracking funds to terrorists in the country, noting, though, that something was already being done to correct it.
Fielding questions from newsmen in Abuja at the close of the three-day 2015 Deputy Defence Advisers/Attaches’ Conference, Okoi said that tracking the funds that go to terrorists within and outside Nigeria would have been easy had the system been better.
“We should expect that we would have positive results from that end, we are doing something about it. It is just because of the system we have in Nigeria, the banking system does not allow you to go into much of these things. But we are doing something about it,” he said.
According to the Defence Intelligence boss, the defence envoys are empowered enough in the course of the conference to acquire and gather enhanced actionable intelligence that would engender the fight against insurgents and their elements.
On the issue of funding, he noted that every sector of the economy is presently challenged and is not exempt as intelligence is expensive. He explained: “Despite the austerity measures announced by the minister of finance following the dwindling oil prices, I assure you of government’s commitment and support in providing the wherewithal for the implementation of resolutions within the limits of available resources.
“I enjoin you to ensure prudent and judicious utilisation of resources allocated to you in view of dwindling government resources.”
The theme of the conference, “Refocusing the Activities of Nigeria’s Defence Missions to Meet Contemporary Security Challenges,” according to Okoi, prepared the participants for new and better ways to carry out their tasks in enhancing national security in line with “the re-engineering process of the Defence Attache system” in furtherance of national interest.
He charged the attaches to recognise the need for “synergy and collaboration among the intelligence and security agencies, both within and outside the country, in order to boost our capacity to maximise government’s huge investments in the security sector.”