I am starting my discourse with a quotation that is popular in the Military High Command. The term “ An Officer and a Gentleman “is a concept and phrase widely used in British armed services since the 18th century.
It was also codified in Article 133 of the US Uniform Code of Military Justice which allows “Conduct unbecoming of an officer and a gentleman” to be punished by a court-martial.
The Nigerian Army a has colonial legacy and it must have adopted the concept in its rules and code of practice.
The term provoke some kind of role expectations and moral conduct of behavior expected from commissioned military officers.
Morals are the prevailing standards of behaviour that enable people to live cooperatively in groups. It also refers to what societies sanction as right and acceptable.
Historically, morality has been closely connected to religious traditions, but today its significance is equally important to the secular world, businesses and government agencies have codes of ethics that employees are expected to follow.
This government came to power on the bedrock of integrity and morality and we expect no less from them in conduct and actions.
C.S. Lewis, in talking about integrity and morality, said, “ doing the right thing, even when no one is looking” Integrity as a foundational moral virtue and the bedrock upon which good character is built. It presupposes understanding, accepting, and choosing to live in accordance with one’s principles, which includes honesty, fairness, and decency.
A person of integrity will consistently demonstrate good character by being free of corruption and hypocrisy.
When integrity and morality combine, it often requires that people sacrifice their own short-term interests for the benefit of society.
People or entities that are indifferent to right and wrong are considered amoral, while those who do evil acts are considered immoral.
Integrity is revealed when people act virtuously regardless of circumstance or consequences. This often requires moral courage. Indeed, integrity is the critical connection between ethics and moral action.
The hues and cries of the society calling the government to do something about the insecurity situation of the country, which is often neglected or treated with levity is causing a lot of frustrations in the society. If care is not taken it will snowball disastrously in our faces.
The President for whatever reason has ignored the call from the low and high in the society to tinker with the high command of the security leadership in spite of the fact that some of them have outlived their period in service what are therefore the justifications for keeping them?
What the people are saying, the leadership of security high command have ran out of ideas to deal with the ever changing sophistications of the insurgents and the bandits, fresh hands or tactics are needed to carry on with whatever good work the current leadership had achieved.
Correct if I am wrong, even during wars military command strictures are tinkered with, if apparent dislocations are observed in the prosecution of the war. To cling to a particular set of leadership in the face of failure or whatever, simply means something is wrong in the way we are do things. No one has a birth right to a particular position.
Just recently when the joint chief of staff of the American Army appeared in a photo shot with the US President amidst the controversy of the killings of George Floyd by the police that sparked nationwide protest, several retired army generals, the media and the general public condemned his presence at the photo shot. They advised the general was overtly breaching the apolitical stand of the army.
The top general had to come before the media and apologise to the American people for his indiscretions. But here we are after several killings of our innocent citizens the military top leadership still feel they are doing a good job worthy of our praise. The claim they have liberated the Nigerian space from the grip of the insurgents is contestable.
For how long, will it take our public officers to admit their mistakes and failures and do the needful.
I started this discourse by quoting the phrase “An officer and a gentleman” because this is a country, where the top leadership is headed by a retired military general, at same time the commanding leadership of the security outfits are in one way or the other are led by retired or serving general.
From the National Security Adviser, the Minister of defence and joint leadership of the Army who are involved in the fight against the bandits and Boko Haram insurgency are all generals, to me therefore they are better placed to understand the dictum more than anyone else.
t must be understood no one is being accused of committing treasonable felony, rather emphasis here is a realization of the fact that the military are morally upright and gentle both in their conduct and actions. The expectation therefore is they will do right thing by gracefully accepting their mistakes or incapacities and apologise to the Nigeria public.
When will our public officers begin to say thank you and resign their appointments honourably for good of the nation without the prodding or dismissal from their employers?
To accept failure or one’s mistake and do the needful is the hallmark of a principled person. Do we really need to tell the generals spearheading the security outfits fighting the Boko Haram insurgency they have lost the public confidence? Can’t they accept the fact they have run out of ideas to tackle the problems. Are they waiting for the president to disgrace them out the office?
Lest I forget, we have been told that attached to appointment letters of the Ministers, are letters of resignations of appointment, the President can invoke to provide a graceful soft exit for any member of the executive found unable or wanting in the discharge of the functions of their offices.
Mr President must know that Nigerians are frustrated and tired with the leadership of security agencies. His continued shielding of those involved in fight against the insurgency is not in tandem with moral high ground his government promised Nigerians.
We must in respective of the heightened spate of killings of innocent citizens by the Bandits and Boko Haram, commend the military for degrading their capabilities. Their success in containing the cycle of indiscriminate bombing of public areas and places of worships should not be forgotten.
The President should as a matter of urgency thank them for whatever good work they have done and bring in some fresh hands.
A country with a population of over two hundred million people cannot be short of capable hands to bring in some new ideas.
We don’t need the public to go on the streets in order to drive their message home.