President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday changed Nigeria’s service chiefs, after much pressure from different groups and influential individuals.
In a statement by spokesman to the president, Femi Adesina, Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to President, Femi Adesina, the new service chiefs are Major-General Leo Irabor named as Chief of Defence Staff; Major-General I. Attahiru as Chief of Army Staff; Rear Admiral A.Z Gambo as Chief of Naval Staff; and Air-Vice Marshal I.O Amao as Chief of Air Staff.
Here are a few details about the new officers:
Chief Of Defence Staff, Major-Gen LEO Irabor
Major Gen. LEO Irabor is a RC 34 officer who attained that rank in 2014 and has served as Theatre Commander in the NE.
He hails from the vicinity of Agbor in Delta State. He takes over from General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin
Major Gen. Irabor who is the immediate Chief of Training and Operations, Defence headquarters, took over from the erstwhile Commander, Major General AA Tarfa.
On the 26th January 2021 he was appointed the new CDS by His Excellency, President Buhari.
Major General Lucky E.O. Irabor was the Chief of Defence, Training and Operations at the Defence Headquarters, Armed Forces of Nigeria.
He is an Alumnus of the Ghana Armed Forces Staff College Ghana, the National Defence College Bangladesh and Harvard Kennedy School of Government Executive Programme, USA.
Irabor is a trained Engineer from Obafemi Awolowo University and holds two Masters Degrees from the University of Ghana, Accra, and Bangladesh University of Professionals, Dhaka.
As the CDTOPs, he oversees training and operations in the Armed Forces of Nigeria under the direction of the Chief of Defence Staff.
Specifically, he undertakes periodic reviews of a broad range of policies and activities relating to training and operations in the Armed forces.
In addition, he is the Chairman of the AFN Committee on COVID-19. The committee is working to prevent the spread of coronavirus disease in the establishments of the armed forces in line with Nigeria Centre for Disease Control protocols.
The committee is also giving support to the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 including the deployment of medical personnel across the country to boost the available manpower in the management of the coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria.
The General was formerly the Theatre Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole, North-East Nigeria as well as Force Commander Multinational Joint Task Force in the Lake Chad Basin Area. The operations focused on counter-terrorism/counterinsurgency.
He is a distinguished awardee of several militaries, ECOMOG and United Nations Awards and Medals.
Chief of Naval Staff, Rear-Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo
Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo was Director of Search and Rescue Defence Headquarters until his redeployment as Chief Staff Officer Naval Training Command in 2017.
He was born on 22 April 1966 and hails from Nasarawa LGA in Kano State.
He enlisted into the Nigerian Navy on 24 September 1984 as a member of Regular Course 36 and was commissioned Sub-Lieutenant on 24 September, 1988.
He is an underwater warfare specialist with a sub specialisation in intelligence.
The senior officer has attended several military courses which include Sub-Technical course and Officers Long course both at NNS QUORRA. He also attended Junior Division 48/89 and Senior Course 26 both at AFCSC Jaji.
Other courses attended include the National Defence Course at the South African National Defence College.
Until his latest appointment as the CNS, he was the Director of Procurement at the Defence Space Administration.
He holds a Master’s degree in Transport Management from LAUTECH.
Major-General Attahiru Ibrahim, Chief of Army Staff
Before the appointment of Maj Gen Attahiru Ibrahim as the new Chief of Army Staff, he was in charge of the 82 Division, Nigerian Army.
He was born on 10 August, 1966 in Doka, Kaduna North Local Government Area, Kaduna State.
A graduate of the Nigerian Defence Academy, Armed Forces Command and Staff College and Nigerian Army School of Infantry, he commenced cadets training in January 1984 and was commissioned in the rank of Second Lieutenant in December 1986 as an Infantry Officer.
General Attahiru has held several appointments on the staff, instructional and in command in the course of his military career.
He was on a tour of duty with the United Nations in Sierra Leone as a Military Observer, where he facilitated the United Kingdom military engagement, Operation BARASS in September 2000.
He was an Operations Officer and later Company Commander in NIBATT 19 ECOMOG Operations in Liberia.
Also, he had the unique privilege of having commanded with distinction all through the chain of command in the Nigerian Army. Prominent among these appointments are Commanding Officer 146 Battalion Nigerian Army (Operation HARMONY IV) in the Bakassi Peninsula, Commander 13 Brigade Nigerian Army (Operation PULO SHIELD), General Officer Commanding 82 Division Nigerian Army.
He was one time Theatre Commander Operation Lafia Dole (the Counter Terrorism and Counter Insurgency Outfit in North Eastern Nigeria).
It is on record that he brought relative stability to the region with the surrender of several Boko Haram combatants.
He was unit adjutant, 7 Battalion Nigerian Army, Sarti; Chief of Staff, 1 Brigade Nigerian Army, Sokoto; General Staff Officer Grade 1 Training/Operations and as well as Staff Duties/Plans at the Headquarters 1, 2 and 81 Divisions of the Nigerian Army.
He was Deputy Director Military Secretary 2 at the AHQ MS (A) and one-time Director Army Public Relations and spokesperson for the Nigerian Army. He was later Director Staff Duties and Deputy Chief of Policy and Plans at the Army Headquarters.
Ibrahim was equally privileged to serve as Chief of Defence Transformation and Innovation and Chief of Defence Logistics at the apex organ of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, Defence Headquarters Abuja.
In that position, he worked with the US Defence Logistics Agency on the Vertically Integrated Logistics Approach (VILA) Programme towards enhancing the operational readiness in the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
He was also privileged to be an instructor at the Depot Nigerian Army, Nigerian Defence Academy and the Nigerian Army School of Infantry.
He was later a Chief Instructor at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji-Nigeria.
General Attahiru has been exposed to leadership and professional development programmes at globally renowned institutions. For instance, he was at the National Defence College Kenya for the National Defence Management and Security Studies Course and at the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army Special Forces Academy Shijiazhuang-Hubei Province, China for the Basic and Advanced Special/Operations Commando Forces Courses.
He has undertaken leadership and security policy courses at the prestigious Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University USA, Graduate School of Media and Communication, Agha Khan University Kenya, Bournemouth University Disaster Management Center and the Geneva Centre for Security Policy.
The General has several honours and awards to his credit. He holds a Masters degree in Strategic Management and Policy Studies from the Nigerian Defence Academy; Masters of Science in Human Resources Management and Development from Salford University in the United Kingdom; and Graduate Diploma in International Studies from the University of Nairobi, Kenya.
He is married with children.
Isiaka Amao, New Chief of Air Staff
Air Vice Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao was born on 14 September 1965 in Enugu. He hails from Osogbo LGA in Osun State.
Amao was the Chairman of the Nigerian Air Force 53rd Anniversary Celebration Committee in 2017.
He was formerly the Deputy Theatre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole and later redeployed as the Director of Policy at HQ NAF.
He was in January 2020 appointed as the Chief of Policy and Plans (COPP).
He attended Nuhu Bamali Pry School Kaduna from 1971-77, Command Secondary School Kakuri Kaduna from 1977-82, Federal College of Freshwater and Fisheries Technology (FCFFT) New Bussa from 1994-96, University of Madras India from 2002-2003, Kaduna Polytechnic from 2005-2006 and National Defence University China from 2012-2013.
He enlisted into the Nigerian Air Force on 19 January, 1984 as a member of 35 NDA Regular Course and was commissioned as Pilot Officer on 20 December 1986.
He started his Primary Flying Training at 301 Flying Training School (FTS) Kaduna from 1987-1989; did the Basic Flying Training at 303 FTS Kano from 1990-92 and Tactical Fighter Training at 99 Air Combat Training Group (99 ACTG) Kainji from 1993 – 99. Thereafter, went for Instructor Pilot Course at 301 FTS Kaduna from 2004 – 2005.
The senior officer had served in following NAF Units: 99 ACTG Kainji as Trainee/Sqn Pilot from 1993 – 2004, 301 FTS Kaduna as Instructor Pilot/Sqn Pilot from 2004 – 2007, HQ NAF Abuja as Air Assistance to Chief of Air Staff from Sep 08 – May 10, Nigerian High Commission London as Deputy Defence Adviser from May 10 – Aug 12 and Ag Defence Adviser from Nov 11 – Feb 12, Defence Headquarter as Assistance Director of operation from Aug 2013 – Jan 14, 99 ACTG as Commander from 25 Jan 14 – 20 Jan 15, 75 Strike Group (75 STG) as Commander from 20 Jan 15 – 16 Feb 16, Air Component Commander of operation Zaman Lafiya/Lafiya Dole (North East operation) from 13 Feb 15 – 16 Feb 16, doubled as Acting Deputy Theater Commander (Air Ops) for operation LAFIYA DOLE from 4 Jan 16 – 16 Feb 16, Director of Policy (DOPOL) at HQ NAF, Abuja from 16 Feb – May 27 and Director of Operations (DOO) at HQ NAF, Abuja from 27 May – 6 Sep 16, Director of Training (DOT) at HQ NAF, Abuja from 6 Sep 16 – 22 Dec 16 and Director of Operations (DOO) at HQ NAF from 22 Dec 16 – 29 Jan 18.
Until the latest appointment, he was the Air Officer Commanding Tactical Air Command (TAC).
He is a fighter pilot and has participated in various operations such as: Draw Down of AFISMA operation in Mali from Aug 2013 – Jan 14, operation ZAMAN LAFIYA from 20 Feb – 19 Jul 15 and operation LAFIYA DOLE (North East operations) from 19 Jul 15 – 16 Feb 16. His decorations include: Forces Service Star (FSS), Meritorious Service Star (MSS), Distinguished Service Star (DSS), General Service Medal (GSM), River Benue Star (RBS), Passed Staff College (psc) and Fellow National Defence University (FNDU) China.
The senior officer has attended several military courses which such as Junior Division Course at Armed Forces Command Staff College (AFCSC) Jaji from Jun – Dec 1986, Senior Division Course at Defence Services Staff College India from 2002 – 2003, Defence Course at National Defence University China from 2012 – 2013, Aircraft Accident Investigation in Civil Airline at NCAT Zaria and Aircraft Accident Investigation Course at Karachi, Pakistan.
He has the following academic qualification: MSc in Defence and Strategic Studies from University of Madras, India, Master of Military Science and Strategy (MMSc) and Advance Diploma in Defence and Strategy Studies from NDU China, Post Graduate Diploma in International Relations and Diplomacy from Kaduna Polytechnic, National Diploma in Freshwater and Fisheries Technology from FCFFT New Bussa and Nigerian Defence Academy Certificate of Education.
AVM Amao is married to Mrs Elizabeth Olubunmi Amao and they are blessed with three boys.
Updated: Chadian President Idriss Deby dies, son takes over
Chadian President Idris Derby has died at the age of 68.
He was said to have died while visiting troops on the frontline of a fight against northern rebels, the army said on Tuesday, the day after Deby was declared the winner of a presidential election.
Reuters reported that Deby’s son, Mahamat Kaka, was named interim president by a transitional council of military officers, spokesman Azem Bermendao Agouna, said in a broadcast on state television.
The late Chadian leader came to power in a rebellion in 1990 and was one of Africa’s longest-ruling leaders.
According to the report, Deby and his army have been seen as a reliable Western ally in a turbulent region afflicted by jihadists. His campaign said on Monday he was joining troops on the frontline after rebels based across the northern frontier in Libya advanced hundreds of km (miles) south toward the capital N’Djamena. L1N2MC20E
The exact cause of death was not yet clear but a European diplomatic source said he had been killed.
“A call to dialogue and peace is launched to all Chadians in the country and abroad in order to continue to build Chad together,” Bermendao said, surrounded by several officers.
“The National Council of Transition reassures the Chadian people that all measures have been taken to guarantee peace, security and the republican order,” he said.
Deby, whose opponents accused him of repressive rule, pushed through a new constitution in 2018 that would have allowed him to stay in power until 2033 – even as it re-instated term limits.
He took the title of “Marshal” last year and said before last week’s election: “I know in advance that I will win, as I have done for the last 30 years.”
He was dealing with mounting public discontent over his management of Chad’s oil wealth and crackdowns on opponents.
But in the election results announced on Monday, Deby was credited with 79 per cent of the vote, handing him a sixth term in office. Several leading opposition figures boycotted the poll.
Western countries have seen Deby as an ally in the fight against Islamist extremist groups, including Boko Haram in the Lake Chad Basin and groups linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State in the Sahel.
His death is a blow to France, which had based its Sahel counter-terrorism operations in the Chadian capital, N’Djamena.
Senate probes CCT Chairman, Umar, over alleged assault
The Senate on Tuesday commenced investigation into alleged assault by the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Danladi Umar on a guard, Clement Sagwak, at Banex Plaza, Wuse 2, Abuja.
The incident occurred on March 29, 2021.
Sagwak had also forwarded his petition to the National Human Rights Commission to probe the incident.
Senator Istifanus Gyang (Plateau North) submitted a petition on the incident to the Senate on behalf of his constituent, Sagwak.
Sagwak, had in his petition dated April 9 2021 and signed by his lawyer, Samuel Ihensekhien, accused the CCT chairman of abuse of power, assault, torture, and ‘xenophobia’.
A five-minute video that went viral captured Umar and the guard having an altercation at the plaza.
Sagwak, 22, and an employee of Jul Reliable Guards Services Limited, told the Senate he was attacked by Umar last month.
He said he was assaulted by Umar and a policeman attached to him after he informed him (Umar) that his car was not properly parked.
He said the CCT boss slapped him several times and forced him to kneel down in the presence of everybody while undergoing his lawful activities.
He asked the Senate to investigate the incident and ensure justice.
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, referred the petition to the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to report back to plenary in four weeks.
Governors agree to implement autonomy for assemblies, judiciary in May
State governors under the Nigeria Governors’ Forum have agreed to implement autonomy for legislature and judiciary, with effect from May.
This coincides with the Senate through its Chairman for the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele saying autonomy for judiciary is non-negotiable.
Chairman of the NGF, Dr Kayode Fayemi, who is also Ekiti State governor, said the decision to implement the autonomy next month was reached in a meeting attended by federal lawmakers, representatives of the judiciary and legislative workers, and the Chief of Staff to the President, Ibrahim Gambari.
The Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) is on strike to protest the government’s failure to implement autonomy for the judiciary.
President Muhammadu Buhari had signed an order to that effect in May 2020, but the gazetting of the order was suspended after the President met with governors — triggering reports that the governors were frustrating the move.
Fayemi said the governors never objected to full autonomy for the state assemblies and judiciary, adding that “the issue is about implementation.”
“There has been no objection from governors on judicial and legislative autonomies. As a matter of fact, it would not have passed if governors were not in support in the first instance, in the state assemblies,” he said.
“But we don’t just want to agree to something on paper without working out the modalities for implementation. Thankfully, the meeting we have just emerged from, with the chief of staff to the president chairing, has worked out the modalities to the satisfaction of all parties.
“As soon as the final document that is being cleaned up emerges, that is preparatory to implementation. We’re not going to put a timeframe in the air, but it will be implemented as soon as possible, definitely no later than the end of May 2021.”
He urged the striking judiciary and legislative workers should return to work.
Fayemi said, “I think we are basically at a position where, whether you speak to the conference of speakers’ chairperson or you speak to me or you speak to the representative of the judiciary or you speak to the solicitor-general of the federation, you will hear that we’re speaking with one voice on the implementation.
”And no later than May, you will start seeing the implementation of the agreement that we’ve reached.”
Also speaking to journalists on the issue on Monday, Bamidele said it was laughable to be grappling with judicial autonomy at this stage of the nation’s development.
He said, “We cannot continue to call on the judiciary to give peace a chance when we know the conditions under which they work cannot guarantee a passionate and enhanced delivery of justice. We are talking about judicial reforms; we are talking about the need for justice sector reforms.
“This is central and crucial to the independence of the judiciary in this country. We must not be left behind by the rest of the civilized world. Nobody stands to lose anything by granting independence to judiciary at the state level since it has been done at the national level.
“The fact that workers and staff of federal judiciary are joining the protest is only in solidarity with their colleagues at the state levels. It is a union matter and we do not have a control over it. We are hereby calling on the State Governors to do the needful because the independence of the judiciary is non- negotiable.
“No democracy can survive without being founded on the rule of law and independent judiciary.”
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