The National Security Adviser (NSA), retired Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno, has posited that the attack on Sunday of the presidential guards brigade could have been averted with collective effort.
Monguno stated this after an emergency meeting of the National Security Council in the Presidential Villa Abuja, Thursday, 28 July.
He disclosed that the meeting was convened by President Muhammadu Buhari to deliberate on recent security challenges bedeviling the country and to make resolutions to review existing strategies in fighting the scourge.
Speaking on the attack, the NSA said, “had there been a collective effort by way of just snippets of information we might have averted that incident, that is not to say that the responsibility is for those outside the security domain”.
He further said that fighting the current type of asymmetric conflict was a collective effort and not something that should be confined to only the security, intelligence and law enforcement agencies.
“When we keep saying whole of society approach, whole of government approach, to get a whole of national approach, what it means is that everybody has to partake in this enterprise”.
The NSA therefore, sought cooperation of citizens in providing information to security service in fighting the enemies of the State.
He blamed the media for allegedly tilting their report in favour of the terrorists, saying that such reports were indirectly fueling their resolve. The NSA equally frowned at the utterances of some political elites, including leaders of thought, saying some unguarded utterances were injurious to the society.
Monguno urged the media to be very careful in whatever it reports, as whatever gets out to the public space can have a debilitating effect on the population.
“Equally, the political elite is also urged to take into account the consequences of utterances, especially from people who have established a reputation, people who are considered leaders of thought, people who are considered to have some kind of influence in society”.
The NSA further disclosed the commitment of the armed forces towards a new strategy to deal with the pockets of violence across the country.
“They’ve given their word, their commitment to the President, that there will be a change in momentum, regardless of the fact that there might be certain institutional limitations which they face. But they understood the enormity of the responsibilities that they have,’’ he added.
In attendance at the meeting included the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami; Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola; Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema; Minister of Police Affairs, Mohammed Dingyadi and the Minister of Defence, retired Maj-Gen. Bashir Magashi.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor, Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Farouk Yahaya; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo; the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao; and the Chief of Defense Intelligence, Maj.-Gen. Samuel Adebayo, were also in attendance.
Others are the Inspector-General of Police, Alkali Usman; the Director-General of the Department of State Service (DSS), Yusuf Bichi; and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ahmed Abubakar.