The new General Officer Commanding (GOC) 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, Enugu, Major General Shehu Yusuf has promised to strengthen and sustain the security shield which the army provides for the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC and the entire region.
The GOC gave the assurance yesterday when he paid a courtesy call on the NDDC Managing Director, Sir (Barr.) Bassey Dan-Abia, at the commission’s headquarters in Port Harcourt.
The new GOC, who was accompanied by the Commander 2 Brigade, Brigadier General Osasugie Uzamere and other top officers, was among the 5 GOCs appointed recently after the confirmation of the appointment of the new Service Chiefs for the Nigerian Armed Forces.
Major General Yusuf said that he had just taken over the army division that covers the South-South and South-East states on Tuesday and thought it was necessary to touch base with key agencies of government in his area of command. “The NDDC is an important development agency that should be given adequate protection to perform its functions,” he said.
The army chief underscored the need for cooperation among institutions of government, noting that it was better to take proactive measures in the overall strategy for addressing security challenges in the country. He stressed the value of collaboration and interface in building a security network that is efficient and effective.
In his response, Barrister Dan-Abia, said that the present security challenges in the Niger Delta called for more vigilance from both the military and the civilian populace. He said he was confident that the new GOC would provide the peaceful environment that would aid development activities in the oil-producing communities.
According to the NDDC boss, the GOC “Knows the territory well. So, we are sure that we will get the best of protection that will help us to deliver on the mandate given to us by Mr. President.”
He expressed satisfaction with the good relationship existing between the army and the commission, stating that without the support of the military, it would be difficult to deliver satisfactorily on the mandate to rapidly transform the Niger Delta.
Barr. Dan-Abia said that the NDDC and the army share a common objective in seeing to the success of the transformation agenda of the Federal Government. In furtherance of this objective, he said, “we will continue to do our best to support the activities of the military, subject to the availability of funds".