Defence College Can Provide Solution to Nigeria Security Challenges- Reps Speaker
The Speaker of the House of Representatives Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, has urged the National Defence College (NDC) to think outside the box and come up with ideas with which Nigeria could address the various security challenges facing the country.
Speaker Abbas, while lamenting the loss of lives and property to insecurity in the country, stated that the NDC, as a research-based security institution, should come up with proposals on how best to tackle the challenges.
The Speaker made the call when the Commandant of the college, Rear Admiral Olumuyiwa Morakinyo Olotu, led the management of the NDC on a courtesy visit to his office in Abuja on Friday.
Speaker Abbas said: “Commandant, you are aware of where Nigeria is today in terms of security. We are at the lowest ebb. We rely on institutions like yours to come up with policies that will minimise – if not eliminate – all the security challenges that this country is facing.
“I believe one of the reasons why you (the NDC) are in existence; why your institution was established, was to proffer solutions in terms of policies,” Speaker Abbas said, while challenging the Commandant to put on his thinking cap.
“Think outside the box. Come up with advice for the Executive as well as for us in the Legislature on what we need to do to actually bring to an end, this incessant insecurity that is bedevilling this country. You are up to the task, and you will be able to deliver at the end of the day.”
The Speaker further asked the NDC to conduct a research on the link between a cashless economy and insecurity.
“A lot of members have been coming to say ‘let us go and talk to the President and ask him to revisit this issue of cashless policy introduced towards the end of last year,’ because it was found that the introduction of the policy significantly reduced terrorism, kidnappings and banditry,” the Speaker disclosed.
Speaker Abbas, therefore, charged the college with proposing non-kinetic measures against the security challenges in the country.
The Speaker, while congratulating Olotu on his appointment as Commandant of the NDC, expressed confidence in his ability to take the “very important” institution to a higher level.
“Commandant, your institution is one of the most prestigious security related institutions that we have in Africa,” Speaker Abbas stated, adding that the NDC remains one of the few military schools that have risen beyond the African continent to become an international institution.
He said: “This is something of great delight to us. From the feedback we are getting from participants all over the world, they are very proud of the kind of training and engagement they get from that institution. So, a big congratulations to you.”
The Speaker disclosed that the House was aware of the challenges facing the NDC, especially concerning funding and enabling laws.
“I want to assure you that before you called in, we already set the ball rolling to ensure that this time around, under the 10th House of Representatives, your institution will be given legal backing,” he said.
Earlier, Rear Admiral Olotu urged the Speaker to facilitate passage of the bill seeking to change the name of the college.
“One of the assurances we will be seeking later is passage of the bill on renaming of the National War College to National Defence College, because the Act still envisages that it is a National War College whereas the college has become National Defence College since over a decade ago,” he said.
The Commandant disclosed that the NDC had graduated a total of 2,758 participants, out of which the Nigerian Army had 1,051.
Olotu also disclosed that the NDC would organise a stakeholders’ roundtable on October 31, 2023, to look at issues around the forthcoming governorship elections in Kogi, Bayelsa and Imo States.