Scorecards are usually the cumulative assessment result of a worker or employee. It is the overall appraisal of deeds and misdeeds. Scorecards can elevate and at the same time destroy reputations. Many scorecards have brightened careers and de-esteemed careers. When a boss sets out to write the scorecard of his appointee or employee, such assessment card cannot be overlooked. In this particular case, the person who took out time to script the content of the scorecard is none less a personality than the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, President Muhammadu Buhari.
From available records, Buhari is not known for unmerited praise-singing neither is he one moved by eye-service subordinates. He is a strict disciplinarian known for forthrightness and hard work.
This is the first time such a detailed scorecard of any of the Service Chiefs is being written for public attention. First, the question to be asked is, “Was the scorecard influenced by ethnic or religious affiliation?” Another pertinent question could be, “Was the scorecard merited?” By the way, the man in focus in the scorecard is the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai.
Buratai was away in N’Djamena, Chad, like biblical David who was away in the bush tending his father’s flocks when Prophet Samuel was asked by God to seek him out to be anointed as the king of lsrael, when his appointment as the COAS came in 2015 by President Buhari, who made him the COAS. Buratai, before then, was the commander of the Multinational Joint Task Force based in N’Djamena. One major task placed on his shoulders was to eradicate the Boko Haram terrorist sect and reform and bring the military back to par with its glorious past. Since his assumption of office, the media, Nigerians, foreign observers, especially the international community, and President Buhari, all have been scrutinizing every of his actions. At times he was vilified by international observers and many times he turned the beautiful bride. When he steps into the political arena, politicians are heard crying “foul” but when he helps to stop the heinous activities of bandits and kidnappers, the people shout “hallelujah.” Same is when he clears the remnant of Boko Haram sect by eliminating their leaders, the people and the world give him the thumbs up.
However, when he unleashes pythons and procodiles to either dance naked or shed tears, the people cry “foul,” to high heavens. Interestingly, the same people would change their countenance and gesture, smiling with joyful songs when he dispatches his medical team to offer medical assistance and healing to the communities.
That is what Buratai is to many segments of Nigeria. Even at that, three most important assignments that have helped to raise the assessment level of Buratai’s tenure are the eradication of Boko Haram to the point of ineffectiveness. Another is the high performance rating of the military, despite traces of Judases in the service. Also, the personnel welfare rating of the army is very impressive, no wonder President Buhari noted this in his scorecard at the recent opening ceremony of the Chief of Army Staff’s Conference 2019. In his first paragraph, the Commander-in-Chief was specific when he stated that: “This conference serves as a platform for strategic leaders and operational commanders to appraise, assess and evaluate the army’s activities for the Year 2019.”
The army scorecard is of great importance to Nigerians and the government, bearing in mind its strategic importance to the country. What actually is on the front burner is not the Nigerian Army per se but the activities of the driver of the army. Buratai being the face of the Nigerian Army. It is his activities that the Commander-in-Chief was assessing. His ingenious strategies on the war front against Boko Haram terrorists. Buratai’s operational plans on internal insecurity were also part of the scorecard. Said the President, “There is no doubt that a lot has been achieved by our army.”
After truncating the democratic process of the country, the Nigerian Army has been able to tuck its tail between its legs by recoiling back to the barracks and has helped to build democracy for 20 years. The once noticeable excesses of the military boys have been drastically reduced. Unlike in the past, when soldiers were daily accused of meddling in simple civilian issues, today, the army can raise its head proudly. Apart from a few reported cases of human rights abuses, which are not too obvious, unlike what was obtainable in some developed countries, the Nigerian Army has been able to discipline its soldiers by court marshalling offenders. Structurally, the army has done well for itself and the watching eyes of the President noticed it when he said, “Establishment of the Army University in Biu, the Army Resource Centre and the Army War College, to further boost intellectual capacity in the forces. The building of 44 Reference Hospital in Kaduna, which would not only provide excellent medical services to our troops but could also serve the needs of United Nations personnel.”
Impressively, the Commander-in-Chief must have been overwhelmed with what he has seen over the years since he appointed Buratai such that he eulogized him 12 times in his address at the conference. Many think that the President should seize such occasions when available to score his security chiefs. Now it is more obvious that the President has been very impressed with Buratai’s achievements and that was the reason for the extension of his tenure in office. You don’t keep an idle hand in office, neither do you keep controversial persons who attract odium to the government. Even the encomiums showered on Buratai are enough to change the mind of critics of the army. Frankly, the army, like a schoolboy learning how to solve mathematical problems the first time, but after receiving the formulae and putting in much efforts, would surely turn out to be a good mathematics student. No wonder the overall headmaster, who is the Commander-in-Chief, wrote in his scorecard with the name Tukur Buratai and said, “your efforts in terms of capacity building, training and conduct of exercises are quite commendable.” Also, he added, “I salute the courageous and gallant exploits of the personnel of the Nigerian Army. I am highly impressed with the conduct of operations that continue to flush out the terrorists from their enclaves.”
What other scorecard can equal or surpass this in Nigeria? Indeed, Buratai has done very well.
Security File wishes to extend warm congratulations to the Comptroller-General of Immigration Babandede over his daughter’s wedding to Muhammad Sanni Adamu in Hadija, Jigawa State. Happy married life