The Senate has lamented the involvement of the Nigerian Army in internal security operations in about 33 states of the federation.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, Senator Ali Ndume, said this during a meeting with the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 1 Division of the Nigerian Army in Kaduna, Maj. Gen. Usman Mohammed on Monday.
He expressed great concern that the Nigerian Army was being overwhelmed and overstretched since it started providing internal security across various states of the federation.
Ndume noted that, going by the provisions of the 1999 constitution, the Army ordinarily shouldn’t have been involved in internal security arrangements.
He said: “We insisted on this oversight visit for some reasons. The Army is facing its own challenges. By our constitution, the Army isn’t supposed to be involved in civil security.
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“But we have security challenges across every part of the country. The Army had to be drafted to provide internal security. We can’t sit in Abuja and talk.
“We need to see for ourselves. We are hoping that the Army will get back to its feet. As a country, we are known to have a formidable Army. But these days, we are worried.”
Commenting on the recent kidnapping incident along the Kaduna-Abuja road, Ndume urged the Army to go after the bandits and kidnappers in their various hideouts.
“In the last few months, we have had peace along the Kaduna-Abuja road. But on Sunday, what happened is worrisome. Along the Birni Gwari, the security situation is also alarming. Unfortunately, the Army doesn’t have the number needed to provide security,” the former Senate leader said.