The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, has warned officers and men of the Nigerian Army against mingling with politicians or playing politics under any pretext.
He warned that any officer who flouted the order would be severely dealt with.
The COAS, who spoke on Saturday during a visit to the 9 Brigade Nigerian Army Cantonment, Ikeja, where over 500 soldiers were on parade, said indiscipline of any nature among the soldiers would not be tolerated.
He said, “I want you to remain apolitical. Any soldier seen fraternizing with politicians or engaging in politics will be dealt with. We must be responsive in the discharge of our duties and be our brother’s keeper. There must be esprit de corps.
“We must collaborate with other security agencies such as the police, security and civil defence corps and so on. You must have a good relation with the civil populace. Respect their fundamental human rights. You must not molest any civilian but uphold our constitutional roles at all times”.
Buratai further said his visit was meant to interact with the officers in the units and formations as expected of a new Army Chief.
“It expected that a new chief of army staff should go round the units and formations to talk to the officers, listen to them and identify with their needs.
“Due to the operations in the North-East, I devote most of my time to the region. I then decided that I have to see you because as military professionals, we have to combine all the operations and perform well.
“Your colleagues in the North-East and Niger Delta are doing well. I know you are doing well here too. Some of you once operated in the North-East and Niger Delta. There are challenges of oil banditry and we will tackle it. We must always compose ourselves professionally and responsibly”, Buratai stated.
The army chief, who disclosed that the Nigerian Army had ordered the purchase of some uniforms, noted that the era of mixed uniforms even among soldiers across units and formations, was over.
According to him, the issue of welfare, logistics and accommodation of officers will be taken adequately taken care of under his tenure as COAS.