African Bar and Nigerian Military’s Successes
By Abdulsalam Mahmud
One would think they are just concerned about fighting for justice. And that is all they do. But not the members of the African Bar Association.
Their activities and programmes transcends the domestic terrain of law. They engage in several humanitarian programmes.
They support every good cause that will foster peaceful coexistence, societal progress and human resources development.
As a continental professional body, ABA desires an Africa whose continent, entirely, will not become another Sudan, Syria or Egypt.
Hence, it is lending its support to security reforms, operations and activities that will protect the fragile peace enjoyed by many African States.
Recently, the body, perhaps, in recognition of the status and importance of Nigeria in matters and affairs that affect the continent, threw its weight behind the various internal security operations being conducted by the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN), aimed at restoring peace and normalcy across troubled parts of the country.
ABA President, Mr. Hannibal Uwaifo, who led some executive members of the association on a courtesy visit to the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Lucky Irabor, at the Defence Headquarters (DHQ), Abuja, maintained that the association is in full support of AFN operations.
He added that the association will be constructive in scrutinizing and criticising the operational activities of the AFN, rather than buzzing the media with undeserved statements that denigrate the Armed Forces, discharging its legitimate duties.
Uwaifo, who highlighted the activities of ABA since its establishment, noted that the association has continued to promote and ensure peace, stability and democratic governance in Africa, while mediating on conflicts and disputes within the region.
He commended the Armed Forces African Bar Association (AFABA) for being the flagship of ABA’s activities.
He noted that the AFABA, which oversees the affairs of military lawyers in Africa have recorded tremendous successes, while its members exhibit discipline and diligence during ABA seminars and conferences.
On the operational activities being conducted by troops in the various theatres, the ABA President averred that the Association is indeed proud of the AFN
He noted that the fight against insurgency and banditry have not been completely won.
The ABA President intimated the CDS of the Association’s intent to partner with the DHQ to co-host a military law conference in Abuja.
The proposed conference according to him, will work out modalities for formulation of privacy laws and law regime in order to ensure security of military data in accordance with international privacy laws.
The CDS, Gen Irabor thanked the leadership of ABA for the collaborative efforts in seeking to project the operational successes of the AFN.
Public understanding of the pains and sacrifices of the AFN, the CDS noted would to a large extent boost the morale of troops in surmounting the security threats across the country.
The CDS added that the gesture by the ABA would add to the numerous voices galvanizing support for the AFN with a view to countering negative narratives and misinterpretation of military operations.
The Defence Chief, commended ABA for promoting human rights, peace and stability within the African continent.
He assured him that the AFN would continue to conduct its counter-insurgency and anti-banditry operations within stipulated rules of engagement, as well as guide against human rights abuses.
The CDS also pledged DHQ readiness to partner with ABA in the proposed Military Law Conference.
Invaluable supports of professional bodies such as ABA have a way of bolstering the counter-insurgency war, morale of the Nigerian Armed Forces, and its troops.
More importantly, it is an indication that the Nigerian Military, under the leadership of Gen. Lucky Irabor, is doing a ‘good job’, worthy of nothing, but sincere praise and commendation.
Mahmud Abdulsalam is Assistant Editor PRNigeria
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