The Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi (retd.), said security agencies were engaged in superiority battles in the recent past.
According to him, they were either fighting to warm themselves into the hearts of Nigerians or to be seen as the most effective service.
He added that the ministry had put an end to that and had strengthened the cooperation among the agencies.
The minister said these while stating the challenges confronting the ministry at the 25th edition of the President Muhammadu Buhari Scorecard Series on Monday in Abuja.
He said, “In the recent past, security agencies in Nigeria always competed to emerge as the masses’ favorite or the ones that are most effective in terms of discharging their responsibilities. They battle each other to assert superiority and dominance.
“The ministry made concerted efforts to strengthen inter-agency cooperation and collaboration. ”
The Minister of Defence also complained that the Nigerian Armed Forces had been overstretched as a result of inadequate manpower.
He said Niger Republic has more military personnel than Nigeria.
The Minister said, “Adequate manpower is paramount for any military force to perform effectively. As of 2022, Nigeria, with an estimated population of about 220 million people, has a total military strength of about 223,000 personnel.
“This gives a ratio of military personnel to the population of approximately 11,000. This is lower than those of Nigeria’s neighbours except Niger (Republic),”
He, however, said there was a need to enhance the capacity of the police and other paramilitary agencies to enable them to discharge their primary responsibility of internal security, adding that the country also needs consistent recruitment of about 12, 000 soldiers biannually to enhance the capabilities of the military to meet the security challenges of the country.