A retired Nigerian Air Force Commodore has attacked the Finance Minister over her refusal to release funds for the fight against the insurgent sect.
A retired Military officer, Air Commodore Audu Abubakar [rtd], has queried Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, for her ineffective defense budget performance especially as it has to do with the fight against the Boko Haram insurgents.
Comm. Abubakar who is a renowned security expert and analyst, in a letter to the Minister, noted that failure of Nigerian troops to overrun the insurgents plotting attacks on Nigerian people and the military in the recent Sassawa attack where over eight soldiers were killed, was not as a result of paucity of funds, but her laxity and wrong perception of defence budgets as just 'another item of expenditure.'
The angry Comm. Abubakar said the voted funds were within reach but that Adeosun's refusal to release the funds for reasons best known to her and her surrogates has incapacitated the Military.
In the letter, the former Military egg-head alleged that Adeosun’s failure to release funds to the Military for counter-insurgency operations has portrayed her as a masked member of the famous cabal, exploiting every avenue to truncate the progress of the President Muhammadu Buhari regime on security.
Parts of the letter reads:
"I am still grieving severely over the unfortunate incident of Boko Haram terrorist attacks on the 233 Battalion at the Sassawa Military Forwarding Base in Damaturu, Yobe State.
We lost some of our best soldiers to this attack, which I believe could have been averted had we allowed conscience and exigency to shadow our actions and decisions.
First, I am not convinced that the Nigerian Air Force [NAF] failed to do the needful as accentuated by reports on social media space, whilst taking off our eyes from the real underlying issues.
I am prompted to write this open epistle to you because our people say, there can never be smoke without fire.
Madam, you may not understand exactly how I feel, but as a retired officer of the Nigerian Air Force, it is disheartening to see colleagues in other arms of the military wasted carelessly because of the insensitive disposition to matters of warfare.
There are claims that the Federal Ministry of Finance which you head, failed to remit money for the funding of NAF, which is a critical component of the ongoing counter-insurgency operations in the North-East.
Hon. Minister, as you may have been informed or gleaned from media publications, NAF failed to respond to the intelligence report from the Army Forward Base at Sassawa by conducting air strikes because of lack of aviation fuel to propel fighter jets to the location to dislodge Boko Haram insurgents.
I have also been intimated that the Air Force component of the counter-insurgency operations had their personnel at battlefront grumbling over unpaid two months salaries and allowances, which you know could dampen their morale.
Hon. Minister, this posturing is very sadistic and has either dramatized to Nigerians your insensitivity in the handling of Defence budgets as national emergencies or lack of understanding of the operations of our military in such special engagements.
I consider this as extreme official negligence, steeped in callous and condemnable tactlessness. It seems to me you don’t believe or want to understand the cardinal objectives of safeguarding and protecting the lives and property of Nigerians, which is the responsibility of government the world over.
Hon. Minister, the failure of troops to overrun insurgents plotting an attack on Nigerian people and the military in the Sassawa incident is not as a result of the paucity of funds, but your laxity and wrong perception of defense budgets as just another item of expenditure.
The voted funds are within reach but you contemptuously holed it in the vaults of the finance ministry for reasons best known to you and your surrogates.
I dare say, this is the height of indifference to President Buhari’s anti-terrorism campaigns; it exposes the revival of sabotaging instincts of some demigods in the system.
And it is everything about the insensitivity and haughtiness of key civilian players in the counter-insurgency war who have relinquished their roles in supporting the Nigerian military in effectively combating terrorism.
I wish to remind you that winning the war against terror in Nigeria is not the sole responsibility of the military alone. It is the responsibility of everyone and everybody, including you, to actively play your part.
Your deliberate refusal to perform a simple official duty as elementary as the release of funds to NAF at this auspicious time has caused us sorrows and grief. The consequences of your sadistic neglect was the defeat we suffered in that encounter.
By my reckoning, your failure to release funds to the military for counter-insurgency operations has portrayed you as a masked member of this cabal, exploiting every avenue to truncate the progress of the Buhari regime on security.
Are you not touched that the Nigerian military is starved of funding in the battlefield to the extent it cannot even pay NAF personnel on the battlefield salaries and allowances, leading to loud murmurs?
Is it not a shame to you that NAF could not fund operational logistics in the battlefield because you withheld their budgetary votes?
Do you know your action placed Nigerians and Nigerian troops at the mercy of terrorists for butchering and indeed, responsible for the blood of patriots spilled at the Forward Base at Sassawa?
Kemi Adeosun, this is an unpatriotic decision and a disservice to your country, a nation you serve at a very high capacity.
Therefore, Madam Minister, I see no urgency or any cogent reason, so compelling for you to ignore this national emergency by your continued withholding of funding for our Military. You have no moral or official grounds to constitute a major setback in the war against terrorism in Nigeria.
This is really unfortunate, to say the least! It beats my imagination as to whether you are pricked by the gravity of what has happened. Are you even aware of the seriousness of the insurgency?
Are you this oblivious of the fact that Nigeria is in a state of emergency with terrorism? Do you know that virtually every day, a soldier is either killed or wounded and innocent civilians are killed or pushed into pains and sorrows from suicide bombings?
But before you bite what you cannot chew, let me remind you quietly that it is the sacred obligation of every Nigerian to support the counter-terrorism war, especially those in leadership positions.
No one is an exemption here. It means all arms of government; party or religious affiliations are at war with Boko Haram. People like you who erroneously think that the military or any particular arm of the security service is in an isolated war with terrorists are on a wild goose chase.
Lastly, Madam, it must not escape your sight that you have contributed immensely in shedding the blood of the innocent because the victory of every adventure on earth is decided by the policies and actions of those who stay in the comfort of their homes to sustain it.
Please stop shedding the blood of these innocent patriots, by releasing the funds. Inevitably, yourself and the veiled turncoats must make haste to perform the necessary acts of contrition before the blood of the innocent, killed in that terrorist attack at Sassawabegins begin to haunt you! Thank you, Ma!"
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