The Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadiq Abubakar, has charged commanders in the Nigerian Air Force to be prudent with finance allocated to them as he would not tolerate misappropriation of funds.
He has also reminded commanders of their responsibilities as a fighting force of not only to protect the sovereignty of the Nigerian nation but protect the lives and properties of her citizens.
Abubakar gave the charge at the opening of a two-day commanders’ retreat holding in Abuja.
He said the treat aimed at enhancing the capacity of commanders and potential commanders in the NAF, had become necessary as a fighting force, adding that these can only be achieved through a sound mind, renewed orientation and re-evaluation of their actions and inactions as leaders.
He said: “We are all obliged to protect the sovereignty and sanctity of our dear country, Nigeria – the unity, as well as the protection of lives and properties of the inhabitants. These can only be achieved through a sound mind, renewed orientation and re-evaluation of our actions and inactions as leaders. It is also pertinent to remind ourselves of the contemporary asymmetric nature of warfare, which has defied the conventional battle. We must recognise that this war cannot be fought in isolation of the civil populace, hence the need to integrate, and win the hearts and minds of the civilian populace towards gaining intelligence to further our missions and operations.”
On the misappropriation in funds, the NAF chief said: “I must also reiterate that in the midst of economic challenges, resources at our disposal, as commanders, must be utilised prudently towards the attainment of set objectives. Needful to say that this present dispensation has zero-tolerance for financial misappropriation, hence the need for commanders to keep abreast of the financial regulations as regards the discharge of public funds. Let me assure you that the Headquarters Nigerian Air Force is working assiduously to ensure that the mandate assigned to the NAF is achieved. As such commanders should remain assured of our support towards the successful conduct of missions and operations. I, therefore, employ you all to maximise the opportunity afforded by this retreat to learn from the experiences of our retired colleagues, rub minds and clear grey areas.
“Commanders’ retreat is an event organised to enhance the capacity of commanders and potential commanders in the NAF. This is why we have made consistent efforts over the past four and half years to conduct training for officers and airmen/airwomen both locally and abroad across various NAF specialties/trades towards ensuring an effective and efficient employment of airpower in response to national security imperatives.”
Earlier in his address, the Chief of Policy and Plans (COPP), said the commander retreat which is aimed at preparing personnel to be disciplined and professional, is also, a forum where commanders are equipped with specific training and information as regards command responsibilities and discharge of command duties.
He said: “This year’s 2020 Commanders’ Retreat was necessitated by the recent appointment of various officers in the NAF to command appointments. The NAF is not oblivious of the fact that the commanders have acquired and equipped themselves with various tools for the discharge of command duties either from staff courses, war colleges, defence colleges or through personal efforts. However, experiences are expensive resources that cannot be overemphasised in a journey of success.
“For you to succeed, you must take a gaze at the horses ahead. Moreover, the fluid nature of the contemporary security situation requires commanders to be flexible in the discharge of command responsibilities of which shared ideas and experiences could greatly help in the light of command challenges.”