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Military Replies Obasanjo, Says His Utterances “Certainly Less Than Noble”

Director of Defence Information, Major General Chris Olukolade

Ayo Balogun, Lagos – After taking a swipe on him, the Defence Headquarters has called on former President Olusegun Obasanjo to be genuinely interested in the growth and sustenance of Nigeria’s democratic credentials as well as improve in his understanding of intricate issues concerning the Military operations against the insurgents.

The call which was made Monday, in a post on the defence Facebook page  urged former Head of State to encourage the military rather than sticking to tendency that indulged in imputation of ulterior motives to every effort, “all for the purpose of discrediting well thought out policies or decisions related to the military’s roles in the polity”.

“The leadership and cross section of the military believes that the former President and retired General has every right to be interested in the actions and fate of the military. Hence, his views like many others will continue to be accorded the well-deserved attention. It is however noteworthy that most of his utterances lately indicate an attitude of playing to the gallery or indulging in politicization of serious national security or military affairs” the post noted. .

Defence headquarters cited comments credited to Chief Obasanjo, alleging that the postponement of the General Elections was to enable President Jonathan to use the Service Chiefs to plot a tenure extension, stating such was surprising, considering the fact that the retired General chose to ignore the clarification and emphatic assurances of non-partisanship of the military as declared in a DHQ statement on the position of the Armed Forces in the ongoing political activities.

“His motive as usual remains unknown but it is certainly less than noble or well intentioned. We dare say again that Chief Obasanjo’s assertions are false.

“Much as the military desires to respect the old General and his views, it has become necessary to point out that his conduct and unguarded utterances of late has fallen short of the standard of discipline expected of an individual who has had the privilege of service in the military and risen to the status of a General.

“The behavior of retired General (Chief) Obasanjo has been so unbecoming and continued to constitute a serious embarrassment to the military before all who have reasonably and rightly adjudged the essence of military background in terms of the high value and standard it tends to contribute to statesmanship.

“We feel constrained to remind the old General that the world has moved beyond that parochial and self-adulating reasoning and mindset which he seems stuck to. Indeed, he needs to be told that by virtue of their better training, exposure, education, assessment and environment, the military personnel of today are already far beyond his level in their appreciation of democracy and its indispensability for the stable and prosperous society which Nigerians cherish” the Military asserted.

The defence headquarters informed General Obasanjo that the institution which he bequeathed to the nation has developed beyond how he left it, adding that the military was now better placed to strive for the maintenance of the legacies and ethos of service, valour, subordination to constituted authorities, and nonpartisan commitment to duty and fatherland.

The Military stated that it strongly believed in democracy as well as its structures and institutions to the extent that it would do nothing to undermine or truncate its steady growth and development.

While pledging to remain professional, the Military also promised onerous duty of working for the stability, defence, and peace of the country under duly constituted authorities in a democratic environment.


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