FILE: Members of the House of Representatives at plenary
The House of Representatives has said the security crises in Nigeria are growing, decrying that nobody is safe anymore.
This is just as its Committee on Defence decried the weak civil-military relations, making reference to the #EndSARS protests.
According to the House Committees Defence, Army, Navy and Air Force, Nigerians have a negative perception of the military, calling called for the respect of human rights during operations.
The committees met with the Presidential Implementation/Advisory Committee for the Implementation of the Recommendations of the Reform Committee on Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces of Nigeria in Abuja on Tuesday.
The leaked report of the Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Restitution for Victims of SARS Related Abuses and Other Matters set up by the Lagos State Government had confirmed the killing of harmless protesters at the Lekki Tollgate on October 20, 2020, while indicting several state actors including the Nigerian Army.
Chairman of the committee, Babajimi Benson, stressed the need for the military to have effective civil-military relations while carrying out its responsibilities.
Benson said, “The 9th House of Representatives is concerned about the certain issues that tend to affect the operations of the Armed Forces of Nigeria. These include, among others, the weak civil-military relations and the negative perception by the public. This is evident in the controversies surrounding the EndSARS protest of October 2020 and the role of the military.
“This House believes that an effective civil-military relation is vital for success in protecting lives and promoting national interest as well as harmony in the society.
“Similarly, the House is worried about alleged human rights abuses both within and outside the Armed Forces. Human rights are universal rights and indeed some of the greatest inventions of our civilisation.”
Benson said it was his hope that the visit and interaction with the presidential panel would further help the defence sector to improve its combat readiness and capability to address the “growing security challenges in the country.”
Chairman of the House Committee on Army, Abdulrazak Namdas, said the House was working towards reducing the clashes that occur during joint operations by the security agencies.
Namdas also stressed the need to protect the rights of both the civilians and military officers.
Chairman of the House Committee on Air Force, Shehu Koko, pointed out that the parliament must review the command structure of the Armed Forces.
The lawmaker also noted issues relating to human rights, stating that it s hould be properly understood by military officers.
Chairman of the Presidential Implementation/Advisory Committee for the Implementation of the Recommendations of the Reform Committee on Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces of Nigeria, Maj. Gen. Alwali Kazir (retd.), noted that there have been changes in how the military operate across the world.
Culled from: https://punchng.com/weak-civil-military-relation-affecting-military-operations-say-reps/