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Delta monarch canvasses better military synergy to tackle banditry, terrorism

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Ovie Avwaeke I of Umiaghwa-Abraka Kingdom. Photo/Oasismagazine

The Ovie Avwaeke I of Umiaghwa-Abraka Kingdom in Ethiope East Council of Delta State, HRM Lucky Ochuko Ararile, has canvassed change of tactics and firmer military strategy to tackle insurgency and banditry in the country.

Air Vice-Marshal Ararile (rtd.) a former Deputy Director of Operations in the Nigerian Air Force, said poor cooperation and coordination between the Air Force and the Army in the fight against terrorism had adversely impacted the war against Boko Haram and bandits.

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He said the situation was so bad that sometimes it looked like no one was in charge, adding that the Armed Forces should re-strategise and end the war, insisting that the piecemeal approach was not working.

“Cooperation and synergy among the forces are necessary. This is because there is no point in having an airplane merely to disorganise, bomb them and kill some bandits, while others run away and the army fails to follow up as ground troops.

“The Air Force attacks from the air and the army ought to finish up on the ground, but where the army does not complement the effort, what is the purpose?

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“Even when the Air Force successfully executes its job, the process should not be seen as completed, because of what others ought to do, which they could not do. So, inter-service cooperation is necessary for the proper use of airplanes. Having said that, the type of threats in Nigeria today, whether insurgency, banditry, or kidnapping, require the use of special forces,” he stated.

He said there was a duplication of roles in the military and security architecture of the country.

“Everybody is doing everybody else’s job. The police have their own special forces under the Inspector General of Police, the Chief of Defence Staff has his special forces, the Air Force and the Navy have their own special forces, and so on.

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“Sometimes, the way they operate is even very disappointing. It looks as if nobody is actually in charge. So, we have serious issues in terms of inter-service cooperation,” he added.

Ararile noted that given the seriousness of the country’s security challenges, massive helicopter services were urgently needed, adding that each state of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja should have at least three helicopters, maintaining that the country would require over 111 helicopters to fight the security challenges nationwide.

He, however, urged President Muhammadu Buhari not to sign the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) and the Electoral Amendment Bill, if the contentious sections were not changed, as demanded by the majority of Nigerians.

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