The Nigeria Minister of Defence (MOD), Mr Mansur Dan-Ali has urged the Directors of Military Intelligence of the Lake Chad Basin to formulate a robust intelligence strategy that would add impetus to the eradication of terrorism and trans-national crimes in the region. The Minister stated this in Abuja, during the 2-day Conference for Directors of Military Intelligence in the Lake Chad Basin which held from June 19 – 20 2018.
Tagged “Defining a Path Way to Enhance Comprehensive and Collective security against Terrorism and Trans-national Crime’’ the Conference was aimed at devising strategies that would improve on the mechanism in gathering and sharing intelligence to enhance security in the sub-region. The conference was organized by the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) in conjunction with the United States African Command (AFRICOM).
Mr Mansur Dan-Ali who was represented by the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin, stated that intelligence is the most important capability in the fight against terrorism describing it as a “force multiplier. ”He also noted that intelligence was needed to foster regional integration and development as well as finding lasting solutions to security crisis in the Lake Chad region.
While speaking on the need to exchange information and intelligence as well as close cooperation among member countries, the Minister urged the intelligence directors and AFRICOM representatives to re-launch a committed partnership and a cooperative approach that would seek to tackle the emerging security threats to ensure peace and development in the region.
Earlier in his remarks, the Chief of Defence Intelligent (CDI), Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Mohammed Usman stated that intelligence is among the numerous tools to use in the fight against terrorism and other crimes. He said that the Armed Forces of Nigeria is committed towards ensuring that the country is secured against internal and external aggressions.
AVM Usman appreciated the efforts and the successes being recorded by the Lake Chad Basin to curtail acts of terrorism and other transnational crimes which he insisted must be crushed. The CDI said that the conference was able to formulate some workable resolutions aimed at eliminating activities of terrorism in the region.
On his part, the United States Deputy Chief of Mission, Dr Daniel Young said that intelligence is a veritable tool in dealing with terrorism. He also identified effective civil military relations as a way of gaining the support of the populace in intelligence gathering.
The Abuja conference was the 4th edition and it provided a unique opportunity for dialogue and liberations among the participants. The first edition was hosted by Cameroon in 2015 while the second and third were held at the AFRICOM Headquarters in Germany.