- President Buhari may retire the current service chiefs and appoint new ones before May 29
- The service chiefs have been having series of meetings with the president in the last few weeks
- It was gathered that the meetings were part of the process for their eventual retirement and exit from office anytime soon
There are indications that President Muhammadu Buhari would appoint new service chiefs before the expiration of his first tenure on May 29.
The president would take oath of office on May 29 for a second term, having won the Saturday, February 23 presidential election.
The series of meeting President Buhari has been holding with service chiefs were part of the process for their eventual retirement and exit from office, which might happen either before the end of the current tenure or after the May 29 inauguration, Daily Sun reports.
It was learnt that the current service chiefs to be affected are Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Gabriel Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant-General Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Admiral Ibok Etete-Ibas; and the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), AVM Sadique Abubakar. They were appointed in 2015.
According to the newspaper, a source at the Defence Headquarters said the service chiefs, whose tenure President Buhari extended severally, were aware that they could be replaced any time and have thus prepared handover notes.
It was also gathered that officers who would be considered as new service chiefs have already been penciled down and being screened without their knowledge.
Sources, according to Daily Sun, revealed that the northeast, northwest, southwest and southeast were featuring in the consideration for officers to fill the service chiefs’ positions.
It was also gathered that two out of the four outgoing service chiefs may be appointed as DCS, to save the military from massive retirement that would come if all service chiefs are replaced with new officers.
The non-retirement of the current service chiefs has led to the disengagement of several senior officers in the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy and the Nigerian Air Force.
Sources said officers of either 36 or 37 Regular Course were favourites in the consideration.
The implication, however, is that this would cause the retirement of officers of Regular courses 35, 34, 33, 32, 31, and 30.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that President Buhari on Tuesday, March 19, presided over routine national security meeting with service chiefs and heads of security agencies in attendance.
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It was reported that the closed door meeting which held at the president’s mini conference room at the Presidential Villa, lasted for over three hours.
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