Military sets up command, control centre in Maiduguri



IN line with a presidential directive, the Nigerian Army yesterday announced the establishment of the Military Command and Control Centre (MCCC) for Operation Zaman Lafiya, the code name for the war against terrorism and insurgency.

Meanwhile, a conference of Chiefs of Defence Staff of member-countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) will, today, hold in Abuja.

A statement by the Director, Defence Information, Maj. Gen. Chris Olukolade, said, “the meeting, to be hosted by Nigeria’s Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, is to work out the modalities for the immediate take-off of the Multi-National Joint Task Force in the campaign against terror in the region. The meeting is Preparatory to the Extra-Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Governments of the LCBC member-countries in furtherance of the multilateral discussion on counter-terrorism operations in the sub-region.

“Military delegations led by the Chiefs of Defence Staff as well as intelligence and security of Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon and Chad are to participate in the meeting along with Benin Republic,” Olukolade said.

Already, a reconnaissance team from the Army headquarters in Abuja arrived in Maiduguri on Sunday for the establishment of the centre.

Therefore, effective from yesterday, the fight against terrorism and insurgency would be monitored, coordinated and controlled from the Maiduguri-based MCCC.

Besides the location of the centre in Maiduguri, an alternate centre is to be established in Yola, Adamawa State capital.

Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Col. Sani Kukasheka Usman explained in Maiduguri yesterday that “the Centre is essentially an elaboration of an already existing Army Headquarters Command and Control arrangement. From now on, the fight against terrorism and insurgency would be monitored, coordinated and controlled from this centre. I wish to inform you that its establishment would not create another layer of command structure but would add impetus and renewed vigour to Operation Zaman Lafiya, all aimed at bringing terrorism and insurgency to an end.”

President Muhammadu Buhari had during his inauguration speech in Abuja directed the immediate relocation of the MCCC to Maiduguri.

According to Buhari, “progress has been made in recent weeks by our security forces but victory cannot be achieved by basing the Command and Control Centre in Abuja. The command centre will be relocated to Maiduguri and will remain until Boko Haram is completely subdued.”

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