President Goodluck Jonathan has taken a swipe at critics of the nation’s Armed Forces, describing any attempt to rubbish their efforts in the ongoing battle against terrorists as reckless.
The President argued that Nigerian soldiers and officers must be appreciated by all and must be insulated from politics.
President Jonathan spoke while receiving a cheque of N1m from Mr. Dotun Oyetunde, in support of the nation’s armed forces.
The presentation was done before a meeting of the Security Council presided over by President Jonathan went into a closed-door session.
“We must continue to commend men of the Nigerian armed forces. A nation must honour men of its armed forces.
“All the nations that we emulate and build our democracy after do not insult their military.
“They must be appreciated and insulated from politics. I feel bad when leaders robe military into our day to day political activities. That is reckless.
“These men stay in the rain while we are under roofs. They stay awake for us to sleep well, “the President said.
Support for Armed Forces
He, however, acknowledged the support the military was currently receiving from Nigerians.
The President reserved special commendation for youth groups that have been demonstrating in support of the Armed Forces.
He urged other Nigerians to take a cue from those who have been donating in cash and kind to the troops.
President Jonathan said such assistance could be channeled through the Chief of Defence Staff, National Security Adviser or the Minister of Defence.
The donor, Mr Oyetunde, said himself and his wife were moved by the plight of troops in the hands of members of the Boko Haram sect.
He said he was surprised that some people were criticising the military and were seeing Boko Haram as political as if the insurgents asked for their victims’ political affiliations before attacking them.
The Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, while introducing the donor told the President that the military had received various donations such as drugs, bags of rice and cartons of instant noodles among other items from Nigerians.
He said that when he received Mr Oyetunde’s message, he discussed with the National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd.), who suggested that the donor should be brought to personally to present the cheque to the President during the meeting.