The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, says the media remains a key partner in the non-kinetic operations of the Nigerian Army in addressing security challenges confronting Nigeria.
Lagbaja said this on Wednesday in Ibadan during the Nigerian Army Civil-Military Cooperation Media Chat for the 2023 Third Quarter.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event had the theme “Leveraging Media to Enhance Nigeria’s Internal Security Operations”.
Lagbaja, represented by Maj.-Gen. Bamidele Alabi, General Officer Commanding (GOC), 2 Division Nigerian Army, Ibadan, stated that the chat was aimed at keeping the media informed.
“The chat is aimed at dispeling rumours and provide accurate and timely information to the media as an important segment of nation-building,” he said.
The COAS added that the media chat was very important, especially at this period when the country was battling with a myriad of internal security challenges.
“The Nigerian Army under my leadership has adopted a multi-dimensional approach requiring the collaboration of all, especially the media, in confronting these challenges.
“Thus, a forum such as this media chat is important for a more detailed examination of issues that relate to the Nigerian Army, in order to provide context and other perspectives to the issues.
“Traditionally, the media keeps the society informed of events as they occur, including military operations. It interprets the military to society.
“The military on the other hand is concerned with the successful conduct of its missions which may require the maintenance of operational security required to win wars,” he said.
Lagbaja said further that advancement in information and communication technology and the rise of the new media had opened new vista in media practice.
He pointed out that this has blurred the line between professional media practitioners and amateurs who practise the trade without ethics or responsibility.
“This has changed the dynamics in the media practice to keep society informed and it has also placed an added burden of helping separate genuine news from fake news.
“A media chat, such as this, is an opportunity to dispel rumours, interrogate issues relating to the Army and debunk fake news,” the COAS said.
He noted that the security environment in Nigeria has drastically evolved such that the Nigerian Army is deployed to combat terrorists, insurgents and other criminals in all parts of the country.
“Therefore, the successful conduct of Army operations requires the support and efforts of the people,” Lagbaja said.
The COAS said Nigeria required a healthy military-media relationship.
“This is in order to create a positive perception that will sustain popular support for the Army’s counter-terrorism operations and other operations conducted to secure the country and protect innocent citizens.
“The media remains a key partner in our non-kinetic line of operations for the security of the country.
“So, the Nigerian Army will continue to train and equip its forces to carry out kinetic operations in compliance with the approved rules of engagement and code of conduct for various theatres, within and outside the country,” he said.
Lagbaja added that the the Nigerian Army under his leadership had put in place robust strategies across all lines of operations.
He said this was to ensure that the security challenges in the country were resolved favourably within the shortest possible time.
Earlier, the Army’s Chief of Civil-Military Affairs, Maj.-Gen. Nosakhare Ugbo, had said the Nigerian Army had continued to strengthen the civil-military relationship in Nigeria and had achieved results.
Ugbo said the Nigerian Army had established a civil-military legal desk to address any human rights abuse by troops during operations and other duties.
“The legal desk has received, investigated and treated 95 percent of a thousand complaints received since 2016 and two percent of it is being investigated while the remaining three percent were discharged for lack of merit,” he said.
The event’s Guest Speaker, retired Maj.-Gen. Bamidele Omozoje, called on the Nigerian Army to continue to liaise with the media in its operations in order to prevent misrepresentation and rumour.
Police Vow to Rescue Abducted Adamawa Speaker’s Aide
The Police Command in Adamawa has confirmed the abduction of Usman Sahabi, the Chief of Staff to the Speaker, Adamawa House of Assembly.
Sahabi, a journalist with the Adamawa Broadcasting Cooperation, Yola, was on secondment to the house.
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, SP Suleiman Nguroje, confirmed the incident in Yola on Thursday.
Nguroje gave assurance that the command would leave no stone unturned to rescue the victim unhurt.
“Sahabi was kidnapped at gunpoint by unknown gunmen at about 1 am on Thursday in his resident at Wuro-chekke, Yola South Local Government Area,” he said.
Nguroje said that the command was doing everything possible to rescue him alive and also arrest the culprits.
“We have already deployed our personnel to swing into action immediately for his rescue.
“We are also soliciting collaboration with the public to provide us with useful information,’’ he said.
Nguroje promised financial reward for whoever that would provide the command with useful information that could lead to the victim’s rescue.
NAN reports that earlier, the state Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalist had condemned the incident and solicited prayers for the victim’s safe return.
The council’s Vice Chairman, Mohammed Ibrahim, said the union quickly reported the incident to the security agencies for their intervention.
Ibrahim sympathised with the victim’s family, loved ones and members of the union over the sad incident. (NAN)
Police Arraign 12 Sex Workers in Ogun
Twelve young ladies were on Tuesday arraigned at an Abeokuta Magistrate Court over alleged prostitution and indecent behaviour.
They were arraigned on a two-count charge of prostitution, behaving disorderly and in an indecent manner in public place, as well as constituting nuisance.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges levelled against them.
The defendants are Abosede Adebowale, Olamide Balogun, Folashade Ogunleye, Opeyemi Akanni, Funmilayo Ishola, Ayomide Balogun, Tomisin Olakohun, Bukola Awonusi, Okiki Ogundimu, Jumoke Michael, Olamide Adebayo and Olamide Gbokiki.
The Prosecutor, Insp. Olaide Rawlings, told the court that the defendants committed the offence on Sunday at Iwe-Irohin along Oke-Ilewo road and the Skate Ground in Panseke area in Abeokuta.
Rawlings said the defendants were parading themselves in an unruly manner and constituting nuisance in public place to wit prostitution and other sex work.
She added that they were arrested by some police men.
The Prosecutor, however, noted that the offences contravene sections 225A(4) and 249(1)(a) of the Criminal Code Laws of Ogun, 2006.
The Magistrate, Mrs A. K. Araba, granted bail to the defendants in the sum of N200,000 each with one surety in like sum, who must be a registered Bondsman with the Ogun State Judiciary.
She then adjourned the case until Nov. 10 for hearing.(NAN)
No Ransom Paid to Secure Release of NSUK Students – Gov.
Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State has said that no ransom was paid to the abductors of the four female students of the Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK) rescued by the military.
Sule disclosed this after paying a thank-you visit to the Commandant, 177 Guard Batallion, Keffi Local Government, Lt.
Reports says that the four students were kidnapped in their residence in Agwan Kare district in Keffi in the early hours of Tuesday, October 10 and taken to unknown destination.
However, after intensive manhunt by the police, military and other security agencies, the girls were rescued on Thursday afternoon.
Inuwa confirmed to newsmen that the students were rescued in the surrounding bushes of Agwan Gauta in Keffi after painstaking efforts by the military officers.
Speaking on the development, Sule said that neither the NSUK authorities nor the military paid any ransom before the abducted students were rescued.
“I am not aware of any ransom. Once security officials mount pressure on the kidnappers, I don’t think there was ranson.
“There was no ranson paid to the best of my knowledge.
“The university didn’t pay any ransom and neither did the military,” he said.
The governor told newsmen that he was at the barracks personally to convey the appreciation of President Bola Tinubu to the commandant for their efforts in rescuing the girls.
He expressed joy seeing the girls in good health, with their parents making arrangements to receive their daughters back.
He disclosed that the military is putting up additional measures to beef up security not only around the university but on the Akwanga-Abuja highway.
“I am happy and I am here to show great appreciation to the commandant and the other security agents that also participated in the rescue operations.
“The commandant informed me that the police and civil defence also participated along with the community leaders.
“I am happy also to see the parents getting ready to see how they can take over their children,” a visibly elated governor said. (NAN)
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