A former spokesman for the Nigerian Army retired Brig-Gen. Sani Usman, Friday said politicizing security issues by some Nigerians was counter-productive to the nation’s quest for security and peace.
Usman made the observation in a message on the occasion of the 2021 Armed Forces Remembrance Day on Friday.
He said that some Nigerians politicise security for expediency, rather than national interest, saying that this was worrisome.
He, therefore, urged Nigerians to appreciate the military for their sacrifices rather than denigrate and unduly criticise them.
Usman said it was disheartening that some people denigrate the Nigerian armed forces for inconsequential and unjustifiable reasons.
“The politicisation of security issues is counterproductive to our quest for peace and security,’’ he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Nigeria celebrates the Remembrance Day annually on Jan. 15.
The former army spokesman noted that this had given some Non-Governmental Organisations the “impetus to continually harass, embarrass, demonise and paint our gallant armed forces’’ and paint them in a bad light.
“It is essential to know that whatever affects the country’s Armed Forces, equally affects its security architecture.
“The continued haranguing of the Armed Forces is demoralising and should, therefore, stop.
“As we celebrate these breeds of courageous and gallant people, some of whom are not with us in this world, we need to reflect and appreciate our Armed Forces’ sacrifices and all they have been through to make Nigeria better.
“They endure hardship, deprivation, safeguarding our lives and properties, risking their lives and yet do not ask for anything other than our collective support, prayers and respect.
“I enjoin Nigerians to show more understanding.’’
According to him, Nigerians need to develop the culture of appreciating the military and veterans, who voluntarily curtail their freedom and privileges and lay down their lives for the benefit of the citizenry, peace and development of the country.
Usman, however, called on the military personnel to respect human rights and the rule of law to earn the trust and respect of Nigerians.
He urged them to be conscious of their critical roles at guaranteeing peace and security in Nigeria by being more professional.
“The military should exercise more understanding and restraint in their dealings with civilians.
“They should continue to remain apolitical, professional and bastion of hope in our collective quest for peace and stable democracy in Nigeria,’’ he said.
He also called on the Federal Government to adopt more creative ways of conflict resolution and create an enabling environment for peaceful coexistence among Nigerians.
Usman said that was necessary to avoid circumstances that could warrant military deployment.
“Leaders should know that most conflicts are resolved through dialogue.
“They should, therefore, explore mechanisms of solving disputes that could make resort to military efforts more effective. (NAN)