The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, says Nigerian troops should tell him the pains and problems they facing in the fight against Boko Haram insurgents which has entered its 10th year.
Buratai said: “You’re here to bare your minds openly; to tell us where you are feeling the pains or shoe pinches you; how best you can administer and how best we can go ahead with our operations to achieve desired objectives.
“You’ve left your various locations, some of you are as far away as Rann, Malamfantori and Damasak. I say every unit must be represented. I want to believe this is what we have here today. So you are all welcome.
"Tell us what is bothering you and rest assured we will find solutions to it; some, immediately and when we will go back to the army headquarters. We will plan and re-strategize to see how best we can solve the problems you have.
“Some of you may not have the opportunity to talk probably to your commander directly. But today, you have the opportunity to tell me exactly what is paining you, where you think army needs to look into critically in the operation.
“There are critical issues like welfare, equipment, general administration, and logistics that all the commanders are aware of what we are doing, so you have an opportunity today to talk as professional soldiers to your chief of army staff and nobody will prevent you from talking to me.
"Whatever you say here, we will not charge you and you must tell us the truth, not lies, evidence and instances, if possible.
"These are issues that we must continue to tackle to ensure that you are properly equipped, properly kitted to enable you to discharge your professional responsibility.”
Before the troops began to speak, journalists in the hall were asked to step out.