Senator Ali Ndume (APC-Borno) says the relocation of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, to the North East has significantly impacted on the fight against Boko Haram insurgency.
Ndume, who is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Nigerian Army, made this known in Maiduguri on Monday while speaking with newsmen.
He said many successes had been recorded within the two months stay of Buratai in the area, adding that what was remaining was the final uprooting of the insurgents in Lake Chad fringes, Sambisa forest and Mandara Mountain.
He said: “Definitely the coming of COAS has made visible difference.
“He has taken a break after two months, to re-strategise because the remaining areas are delicate, because they are mixed with civilians being held hostage by the insurgents.
“The army needs to sort that out to avoid high level of collateral damage.
“They need to strategise for the last push.”
He said the recent sporadic attacks on soft targets by the insurgents were normal as they become desperate after being defeated by the military.
Ndume lamented the delay in releasing funds for military capital projects, adding that the military and other security agencies needed to be given all the needed support to discharge their assigned tasks.
He said: “I don’t know what happened from Thursday that I left Abuja, but before Thursday you can quote me on that, no money has been released to the army as their capital allocation 2020 and we are in June.
“The President has been giving presidential orders on tackling insecurity but some people responsible for providing the army with funding are not responding.
“That’s what is baffling me.”
Ndume lauded Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State for his commitment towards reconstruction and resettlement of people in areas affected by the insurgency before the farming season.
He said: “I want to personally appreciate the governor for his courage and determination, resilience and of course commitment to making sure that he returns the people of Kirawa, Ashegishar and Ngoshe back to their homes.
“Already the governor is waiting for the military to give him the go ahead for the state Ministry of Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement to move in.”
Ndume said he had been making contact with the military towards deployment of soldiers in Kirawa, a border community, so that Nigerians taking refuge in Cameroon can return home and continue their farming activities.