Ibrahim Attahiru, chief of army staff, has asked the senate to improve funding for the military to purchase equipment and weapons.
Attahiru, who stated this on Wednesday while receiving the senate committee on army in his office, said the support of the lawmakers is needed assist the military to defeat all security threats.
The army chief said Nigeria is faced with a lot of security challenges that include insurgency in the north-east, banditry in the north-west and parts of north-central, as well as secessionist agitations in the south-east.
“To curb and finally defeat these threats, the Nigerian army requires equipment, weapons, armour fighting vehicles, platforms, and various combat enablers,” he said.
“I urge you to, as a matter of urgency, consider these critical needs as you legislate and appropriate funds.
“I will be counting on your support, so that we can efficiently perform our constitutional roles and defeat all our threats.”
Attahiru said the committee’s visit was timely as it afforded them the opportunity to interact and discuss issues that would impact on the funding of army operations.
He also assured the lawmakers that the army, under his leadership, will remain apolitical and committed to the protection of democracy and good governance in Nigeria.
On his part, Ali Ndume, chairman of the committee, said the purpose of the visit was to have a close understanding of the issues and needs of the Nigerian army and find a way to address them.
He said the army has the daunting task of mitigating the various security challenges confronting the country, and that the national assembly was ready to give the necessary legislative support.
“That is why we are calling on the government to give the Nigerian army the necessary support and tools to execute the mandate that is highly expected,” he said.
“Fortunately, we understand that the supplementary budget will be laid before the national assembly to take care of some of the loopholes and lapses that we saw in the 2021 budget.
“Knowing the new security challenges that we are facing in various regions, we are pledging that the national assembly will give all the necessary support to the Nigerian army; especially, when it comes to the issue of budget or supplementary budget that is coming before us.”
The development comes after soldiers at the frontline had lamented lack of adequate weapons.
Meanwhile, in March, Babagana Monguno, national security adviser (NSA), had said funds for arms purchase were missing under former service chiefs.