By Uche Amunike
President Muhammadu Buhari has named the first ever coordinator that will henceforth, man the affairs of the National Counter Terrorism Centre, (NCTC), in the next 5 years, Rear Admiral Yaminu Ehinomen Musa (Rtd).
According to the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, who made the announcement, Tuesday , the appointment takes effect immediately and will run for the next five years.
The Centre which is established in the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), is the body that coordinates the harmonization of all counter terrorism financing efforts in the country.
It is also responsible for coordinating all counter-terrorism policies, strategies, plans and support in the performance of the functions of the National Security Adviser (NSA), as provided in the terrorism (Prevention of Prohibition) Act 2022.
Prior to his appointment as coordinator of the National Counter Terrorism Center, Rear Admiral Yaminu Ehinomen Musa (Rtd), was the Director at the Office of the National Security Adviser as far back as 2017. He was placed in charge of reviewing the National Counter Terrorism Strategy (NACTEST), as well as creating the policy framework and national action plan for Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (PCVE), which was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
NACTEST was mostly created from considerable research from different departments of the counter terrorism Centre after series of consultations with security practitioners, academics and international experts. It birthed a robust National strategy that combined the hard military approach, intelligence gathering, use of force with a mild approach, which aids in winning hearts and addressing the root causes of radicalization in Nigerian communities.
It is based on five pillars, which are Forestall, Secure, Identify, Prepare and Prevent.
By forestalling, they engage the public in sustained sensitization campaigns and de-radicalization programmes, thereby encouraging prevention.
They secure the nation by offering them protection of life and property, services like national interests and key national infrastructure.
They also investigate and bring violent extremist offenders to Justice by identifying , while properly preparing the citizens in order to mitigate the consequences of terrorist incidents.
Finally, they ensure implementation by devising a framework to adequately mobilize and sustain a coordinated cross-governmental population centres effort. By so doing, the strategy is effectively implemented based on the five pillars, while the progress of interventions is regularly assessed, even as the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) is mindful of security threats.
According to the Special Adviser to President Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the appointment of the pioneer Coordinator, National Counter Terrorism Centre, Rear Admiral Yaminu Ehinomen Musa (Rtd) came at a time that the Nigerian government is intensifying efforts in fighting terrorism in the country.
Recall that before his appointment as Coordinator, National Counter Terrorism Centre, the senior Naval Officer has been the person representing Nigeria at the Global Counter Terrorism Forum (GCTF) in the last three years.