By Doosuur Iwambe
*Says, nothing to celebrate face of insecurity challenges
Elders in the country have taken a swipe at predsident Muhammadu Buhari over his continued refusal to sack the service chiefs despite the worsening security situation in the country.
The elders under the auspices of Coalition of Patriotic Nigeria Elders (COPANE), in a statement on saturday noted that sacking the service chiefs would have been the best way to celebrate the 2021 Armed Forces Remembrance Day.
According to the statement jointly signed by group’s National Coordinator,Prof. Habu Usman Galadima,National Secretary, Dr (Mrs) Grace Onanefe and Legal Adviser,Barr. Muhammad Ibrahim Postiskum, the elders maintained that there was nothing to celebrate in this year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day because of the inability of the President to address the numerous problems confronting members of the Armed Forces alive, especially the frontline troops.
The group said that the refusal of the pigeons which are symbols of peace to fly during the ceremony to mark the day in Abuja was a bad omen for the Buhari led government.
The statement read; “While we celebrate and pray for our heroes past who had served our dear country and paid the ultimate price as members of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, we wish to state that there is nothing to celebrate in this year Armed Forces Remembrance Day because of the inability of Mr President to address the numerous problems confronting members of the Armed Forces alive, especially those in the frontlines.
“We observe with regret that the long and unnecessary tenure of the current service chiefs has not only affected career progression, in the Armed Forces of Nigeria today but also resulted in low morale among officers and men of the services besides other forms of setbacks. This is unconstitutional.
“The best gift Nigerians were expecting at this year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day was the sack of all the service chiefs,followed with the appointment of younger officers with zeal and commitment to end this war”.
The elders said the president’s speech at the Armed Forces Remembrance Day event was empty given that it failed to address insecurity threatening the country.
“We make bold to say that Nigerians were not interested in the president’s speech today because it does not address their yearnings which is the long overdue sack of the nation’s service chiefs.
“The arguments by some selfish persons around Mr President that he should not change the guard during war is the most irresponsible, misplaced, selfish and unprofessional arguments”.