National Security Advisor, Nuhu Ribadu has barred personnel of the National Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Nigeria Immigration Service and Federal Fire Service from using camouflage outfits.
A January 16 circular issued by Mr Ribadu’s office referenced a 2015 National Security Council resolution which resolved to restrict the use of camouflage to the armed forces and the police when on joint operations. The decision was to address the proliferation and imitation of military wear by criminals and impostors and was seen as “a pathway for enhancing Nigeria’s national security.”
But the directive, according to the circular, has been loosely adhered to, with personnel of the fire service, immigration and NSCDC including “camouflage uniforms in their dress code, thus disregarding the ban on the use of the uniforms.” According to Mr Ribadu, the disregard for the ban and its continuous use “makes the outfit easily accessible to criminals and impostors, thereby exacerbating the already challenging security situation facing the country.”
The NSA stressed that the need to enforce the ban followed the rise in the use of camouflage outfits to launch deadly attacks on communities. Case in point was the recent unfortunate attack on communities in Plateau State where the perpetrators were reportedly dressed in camouflage uniforms,” said the NSA.
He added, “This further underscores the need to ensure that the ban placed on the use of camouflage uniforms by security agencies other than the Armed Forces and the police on special occasions, such as joint operations, is strictly enforced.”
Mr Ribadu urged Interior Minister Bunmi Tunji-Ojo to immediately direct the affected security agencies to restrict personnel from wearing camouflage uniforms.
“In view of the foregoing and in the interest of national security, you are kindly requested to direct security and law enforcement agencies under your ministry to withdraw all camouflage uniforms from their personnel and discontinue the use of the outfit with immediate effect.
“You are also requested to take necessary steps and emplace stringent measures to ensure that the ban on the use of camouflage uniforms is upheld, enforced and strictly complied with by all security and enforcement establishments under your Ministry,” he stated.
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