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A former Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika (rtd.), has explained that he joined politics to be able to contribute his quota as a former security chief toward the peace, security, and unity of Nigeria.
Ihejirika made this disclosure at a news conference which was monitored by The Eastern Updates in his Ovim country home in Isuikwuato Local Government Area of Abia.
He also hinged his reason on the fact that he needed a platform ‘to make myself available for service both at the state and national levels’.
He said that he did not join the All Progressives Congress (APC) ‘under pressure’ or to evade probe by the government.
The former Army chief also spoke on the current state of insecurity in the country.
‘I left office at a time Boko Haram was building up and we did our best to stem the tide,’ he said.
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He said that he had availed himself of available opportunities, including the Annual COAS Conference by the Ministry of Defence, to offer advice on how the nation’s security challenges could be surmounted.
‘I can say that a lot has been achieved by the Armed Forces in tackling Boko Haram insurgency,’ he said.
Ihejirika noted that the APC-led Federal Government had laid a solid foundation for the growth and development of the country.
He spoke against the fear that Nigerians might vote against APC in 2023 because of the numerous socio-economic challenges that have bedeviled the country since it took over power.
The former COAS said that it would not be right for anyone to say that the party had not made any meaningful impact since it formed the government in 2015.
According to him, governance is like a building block. When the foundation has been properly laid, one can now build on it.
‘I’m sure that APC has made substantial efforts toward national development since it took over power.
‘It is for the next administration to build on the achievements recorded by the present government,’ he said.
Ihejirika cited the road and railway infrastructure and other development initiatives as some of of the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
He also hailed the federal government’s interventions in agriculture, using the Central Bank of Nigeria to drive a revolution in the sector.
‘There is, however, room for improvement in all sectors of governance in the country,’ he said.
The former COAS said that greater success against insecurity could be achieved, with necessary logistics support and incentives by the government to the security agencies.
He advised that vigilance groups should collaborate with security agencies and that the people should assist with relevant and timely information on security breaches.
THE EASTERN UPDATES