Popular Islamic scholar, Dr. Ahmad Abubakar Mahmud Gumi, says enlistment into the Nigerian Army is now for the highest bidder.
He stated this while reacting to the challenges preventing the nation from completely wiping out Boko Haram insurgency.
Gumi, who resigned as a Captain in the Army’s Medical Corps in 1986, however, praised Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, for bringing modest improvements to the Army.
He said, “We are now facing a serious problem and we should not be sensational, but intellectual in our approach. We should be intellectually focused so the nation will know where we are. It is not about politics. It is a big problem, but can we face it? Yes, we can face it, but we need to put the right people. It should not be politicized.
“Already, the Army was a skeleton before Buratai became the Chief of Army Staff. One of the governors from one of the southern states said it: that they buy the position.
“I sent a boy to Depot Nigerian Army in Zaria and they were asking for money. How many people get into the Army and Police Force with money?
“Up till now as I am talking to you if you have money you have your way. So, people buy the position and are not ready to fight. They are just there to get a ladder to make money; to be sent to lucrative positions.”
Gumi added, “If it is police they are looking for where they would be sent as escorts to get money; if it is Army where they would be sent to where they are doing oil bunkering.
“Nobody wants to be a professional soldier; I am telling you. Once you are there you can do nothing.
“What they are doing is to give Nigerians Panadol when they are suffering from typhoid fever. You know what typhoid fever does? It perforates the intestine. It causes psychosis, which is a very serious disease, but when you give Panadol to suppress the fever it will not cure the man so the person will die.
“That is what Nigeria is. The systems, the institutions are all hallow. So, what do you want them to do? We need people who are competent, who will come to build the institutions, correct the institutions on (an) intelligent and scientific foundation, not those who are propagandists trying to make us believe they are doing something when they are doing nothing.”