Gen Tukur Buratai
General Tukur Buratai, Chief of Army Staff

Nigerian Army Commences Operation Python Dance Nationwide- Buratai
(A remark by Lt General Tukur Buratai, Chief of Army Staff at the Flag-Off of Operation Ex Egwu Eke in Kebbi State on January 8, 2019)

I am highly delighted to be in 8 Div AOR today for this important event to flag off EX EGWU EKE III in 8 Div Area of Responsibility (AOR). This is another historic event geared towards reassuring law abiding citizens and Nigerians in general of the resolve of the Nigerian Army to provide adequate security and safety even as the nation approaches the 2019 General Elections. This significant event is also a reassurance of the resolve of the Nigerian Army to conduct joint operations in collaboration with other security and para military agencies in aid of civil authority.

The objective is to reinvigorate all existing operations in the country with additional manpower, equipment and resources to address the lingering security problems in the country. I am to assure Nigerians that at the end of the exercise, the Python must have swallowed all the bandits, rustlers, terrorists, kidnappers, robbers and militants in the country. The Python will also swallow thugs and other miscreants that may raise their ugly heads. Finally, it is also meant to address the issue of fake news and unpatriotic elements that are impeding military operations and demoralizing forces at the expense of national security. The exercise is also a realistic training package in Internal Security operations, clearance operations, emergency management, rescue operation, road blocks, cordon and search as well as anti – kidnapping.

It is necessary to draw attention of well-meaning Nigerians that while reporting issues of defense and security, they must have at the back of their minds the importance of national security. Just as mentioned earlier, defense and national security is not all comer’s affairs. No one is permitted to divulge any information that is injurious to national security. This is contained in the Official Secret Act 1962. Subject to “Section 1(3) of this Act, a person who transmits any classified matter to a person to whom is not authorized on behalf of the government to transmit it; or obtains, reproduces or retains any classified matter which he is not authorized on behalf of the government to obtain, reproduce or retain, as the case may be, is guilty of an offence”. I enjoin Nigerians to be mindful of the fact that this is the only country that we have and no effort should be spared to save it from the claws of unpatriotic elements fighting to pull the country down. Giving out official information or spreading fake news is inimical to national security.

Prior to EX EGWU EKE III, recall that Op SHARAN DAJI has intensified operations to stop the activities of cattle rustlers, cross border crimes, kidnapping and others. It is worthy to note that the clearance operations conducted have achieved commendable successes with several armed bandits neutralized while other criminal elements are on the run. The momentum of the operation must be maintained. We must continue to display professionalism in the discharge of our constitutional roles while acting in aid of civil authority. Do not provide any opportunity for criminal elements to infiltrate your ranks. You must also embark on Civil Military Relations activities such as medical outreach etc.

Let me use this opportunity to reaffirm the commitment of the Nigerian Army and our mandate in aid of civil authority. Accordingly, EX EGWU EKE III has the mandate to provide adequate protection and security for the good people of Nigeria. I am also calling on all law-abiding citizens to provide troops adequate support especially timely information to enable them to accomplish their task. I assure you of adequate logistic and operational support throughout the conduct of this Exercise.

Lt. General Tukur Buratai
Chief of Army Staff