Security challenges confronting the country such as kidnapping, cattle rustling and farmer/ herders clashes pose more threat to the peaceful coexistence of Nigeria than the insurgency in the North East Nigeria, the minister of defence, Mansur Muhammad Dan-Ali has said.
The minister who spoke at the opening ceremony of the national workshop on civil military relations and the media which held in Kaduna, Thursday, observed that armed conflict situations often present fertile ground for friction between the military and the media.
He said the security threats call for increased inter-security agency collaboration in the area of intelligence information sharing and effective collaboration with the media to turn the tide against criminal elements.
The minister said to achieve that, efforts must be sustained to create a framework for enhanced synergy among security agencies and with the media.
He said, ” Until crime and criminality rates are greatly reduced to the barest minimum, the hope of creating the enabling environment required to attract foreign investors and increase national revenue generation will continue to remain a mirage.”
He said the military must however at all times be conscious of the law and be guided by the rules of engagement while it is imperative for the media to be guided by professional ethics.
Chief of Defence Staff, General General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin in his address observed that both the armed forces and the media have a responsibility towards protecting the citizenry hence must partner to achieve that goal instead of working at cross purposes.
He said the role of the military in modern times has expanded beyond external aggression to tackling new challenges that are beyond conventional policing.