In this interview, a security consultant and former Director of the Department of Security Service, Mike Ejiofor, speaks on the implication of withdrawal of the DSS personnel from protecting the president.
Do you think the Army has the capacity to provide close body protection for the president?
It is a laughable question because, on one hand, the president is directing that the military check points be withdrawn to perform their military duty. How can you now entrust the life of the president to the military when there are people who are statutorily charged with the responsibility? Whether the ADC was given the directive, he doesn’t have the authority and capacity and I stand to be challenged.
It cannot come from the ADC. If government has been constituted, such matter should either come from the NSA or the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
The Department of Security Service is charged with the protection of the president, the vice president, the Senate president, the governors, deputy governors, speaker of the House of Representatives and state lawmakers and their families.
The president’s security should not be toyed with. I believe that what is going on now is people who are trying to settle personal scores. Instead of looking at national security, they want to settle personal scores and, in the process, compromise national security and the security of the president. I don’t believe it, but if it is true, it’s rather unfortunate because the military personnel being drafted are not trained in body guard protection. The DSS men are trained for VIP protection and the president falls under VIP.
What do you think is the way forward?
In the present circumstance, government has to issue a statement because the statement from the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity did not deny or confirm that the DSSS has been asked to leave the Villa. There must be a specific statement on whether they have been withdrawn or not. As we speak, we don’t know the true position and it is very dangerous to the security of the president.