Opposition parties, under the aegis of Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP), have asked the Minister of Defence, Mansur Mohammed Dan Ali, to request redeployment if he is not comfortable working with service chiefs, saying it is important as security issues cannot be politicized now that the situation in the country remains sensitive.
CNPP, in a statement in Abuja, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to accede once the Defence Minister put in such request.
The statement, signed by CNPP’s Secretary General, Chief Willy Ezugwu, expressed concern that “meddlesomeness being exhibited by Alhaji Dan’ Ali” showed that there is an undeclared issue between him and the service chiefs and that such frosty relationship had been, in part, responsible for the poor response to the activities of Boko Haram in the past. CNPP’s statement was in apparent reaction to the committee set up by the Minister to monitor the running of the armed forces by the service chiefs.
The committee, eliciting disaffection, is said to be made up of retired generals whose actions may be interpreted as interference in the activities of the nation’s military high command.
When Sunday Vanguard contacted the Minister, Mansur Dan Ali, on the allegation, he responded: “Ministry of Defence has the responsibility to ensure that government’s directives and policies are strictly adhered to by the services at all times. “The committee, set up by the ministry, was not meant to indict anybody, rather it was based on a presidential directive to ensure accountability and transparency in administration of resources allocated.
“It should be recalled that, recently, the Federal Ministry of Finance was also directed to conduct audit of all monetary transactions of the military with a view to strengthening government policies and prudence and accountability of all financial allocations”.