By Yakubu Lawal
The new Acting Director, Defence Information (DDI), Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, has appealed to the media to continue to support the military in the effort to defeat terrorism and criminality in the country.
Nwachukwu made the appeal on Friday at the Defence Headquarters, Abuja, after Brig.-Gen. John Agim, handed over to him.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Agim retires from the Nigerian Army on Friday after 35 years of service.
The new DDI acknowledged the contributions of the media in the quest to rid the North-East of insurgency and terrorism, noting that they had defied the dangers associated with it.
He also noted that the media remained firmly resolute in exposing the ills of terrorism, hardship and trauma to which the terrorists had subjected the citiznery.
“Coming from the theatre of operation in the North-East, I have observed that you, journalists, diligently go about your duties to promote justice, fairness and equity in your reportage in the face of the crisis. “I implore you not to relent but rather redouble your efforts in supporting the Armed Forces of Nigeria, until we rid our society of the criminals.’’
He described terrorism as “a societal ill and an aberration’’, which threaten collective peace, unity and national development and must not be allowed to thrive. “It is, therefore, pertinent to work hands in glove to deny our common adversary the oxygen of publicity and crush the grandiose ego of terrorism.’’ Until his appointment, Nwachukwu was the spokesman of the Theatre Command, Operation Lafiya Dole, in Borno.
In his remarks, Agim, the outgoing DDI, noted that the task of managing the image of the armed forces was challenging because of the nature of military operations and its implications on the nation and citizens.
He, however, said that he dedicated his years of service in managing the image of the armed forces to ensure it got the “much needed public support’’.
Agim thanked the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin, and the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, for the opportunity given to him to serve, as well as the media for their support.