The war against Boko Haram insurgency has not abated since it took off in 2009.
Every day, attacks are carried out on Nigerian soil, dealing deadly blows to even the country’s military, a situation experts have described as owing to massive intelligence failure and lack of funding on the part of government.
Ona Ekhomu, a security expert, on Thursday told SaharaReporters that the intelligence infrastructure in the war against Boko Haram was faulty, leading to ambushes during critical operations.
He said, “The dynamics of the war against insurgency are changing and perhaps the entire military high command has to figure out how to change with that dynamic.
“Take for example the battle commission that they have which is an integrated battle commission whereby when there is an attack or when there is a legal operation, the air cover provides support for the ground troops. In fact most of the times, the air troops go and get the bad guys then the ground troops move in for mop-ups so the battle plan is sound but we still have attacks here and there which is quite dihabilitaing.
“You know, the frequency of attacks, the widespread nature of attacks, what that says to me is that the intelligence infrastructure is very faulty. We don’t have enough intelligence, so we are not able to learn of their (Boko Haram) intentions before they carry out operations. So, this is a problem with the intelligence community (IC) that is the DSS, the DIA, and so on.
“That is where the government really needs to focus on as a fighting army. The war has dragged out for so long and as you know if you stay in the toilet for so long, you will see a lot of flies.
“Why insurgency is not over today is that there is a massive failure of intelligence and there is a need to reorder the war because the fight that General Buratai came to fight which is a frontal assault has proved a little effective.
“There used to be local governments under the enemies control but now they have been reclaimed because even though some has fallen again to the enemy. Like I said, if you stay too long in a war, you start seeing all kinds of dynamics.
“The enemy continues to be very effective and very lethal, launching vicious attacks and that is troubling to me.”
Lawrence Alobi, a former Commissioner of Police in the Federal Capital Territory, told SaharaReporters that one of the biggest barriers to winning the war against insurgency in the country remained lack of funding.
Alobi said without funding and access to the latest technology and weapons, troops have no chance in confronting the insurgents.
He said, “The government is doing its best in line with section 35 of the constitution which says the primary responsibility of government is protection and wellbeing of the citizens.
“Security is something that is key and central without which there will be no government, no development. There is nowhere with total security because life is dynamic. For instance, the issue of COVID-19 was never there and right now it has brought about some challenges for the government.
“They (government) have gotten to a situation where they are going after soft targets. The government has not been able to fund and equip the security agencies which include the military and the police because they are both fighting this war in the North-East.
“So, I think they need to be motivated, they need to be well equipped because security now is technology driven and that requires funding, to gather intelligence, to have weapons and training. The officers and men need to be trained for them to have the capacity to confront the terrorists.”