Officials in the administration and some retired security and military experts who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES, expressed the view that the decision by the president to continue working with the service chiefs and the National Security Adviser he inherited from the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan, is greatly affecting the war.
“Service Chiefs are currently sitting at the edge of their seats; there is a regime of uncertainty because it was clear to them and everyone that they would not be part of the new administration, as such, they presently do not go the extra mile,” one official said.
In the report filed by Sani Tukur, It was also gathered that there is presently no long term commitment on the part of the Service Chiefs and other top commanders, owing largely, to the uncertainty regarding their tenure.
“All the Service Chiefs have cleared their desks including the NSA, and each day, they expect to receive the news of their sack, in that case, how do you expect someone to be in the right frame to prosecute a war as complex as the one against Boko Haram who use civilian targets as shield,” he said.
PREMIUM TIMES source added that the Service Chiefs are presently hardly taking any decision on the war and security matters.
“They are often only called in to be given directive to carry out, the president is the one in charge,” he said.
“Take for example the decision to remove military checkpoints; an order was simply given without recourse to brainstorming on the issue,” he said.
Another retired army general, who also asked not to be named for “personal reasons” said other high ranking military officers, sensing the insecurity on the part of the service chiefs have begun to show signs of indiscipline.
He said top commanders are unable to enforce discipline at present because “everyone knows that the leadership are living on borrowed time, and so, hardly carry out directives”.
Our source added that the tenure of Service Chiefs is usually two years and the current chiefs were appointed in January 2014, as such, they know sack or not, they would leave by January 2016.
“I know that what is agitating the minds of our chiefs at present is planning their post retirement life and not any long term plan to prosecute a war.
“What I would advise the president is to allow them leave, so that he, himself would be focused with a fresh team he personally put in place, the earlier we do this, the better for us as a nation,” the source said.