National Security Adviser Nuhu Ribadu has banned members of the National Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Nigeria Immigration Service, and Federal Fire Service from wearing camouflage uniforms.
The office of the NSA issued a circular on January 16th, addressed to the Interior Minister Bunmi Tunji-Ojo.
Citing a resolution from the 2015 National Security Council that limited the use of camouflage to law enforcement and the armed forces during joint operations, the NSA office explained that the action be viewed as “a pathway for enhancing Nigeria’s national security” and likewise made in response to the rise in criminals and impostors imitating and wearing military gear.
The disdain for the prohibition and its ongoing use, in Ribadu’s words, “makes the outfit easily accessible to criminals and impostors, thereby exacerbating the already challenging security situation facing the country.”
The NSA emphasised that the increased use of camouflage clothing to carry out lethal assaults on civilian targets made the prohibition necessary.
“Case in point was the recent unfortunate attack on communities in Plateau State where the perpetrators were reportedly dressed in camouflage uniforms,” said the NSA.
He added, “This further underscores the need to ensure that the ban placed on the use of camouflage uniforms by security agencies other than the Armed Forces and the police on special occasions, such as joint operations, is strictly enforced.”
Additionally, Ribadu asked Tunji-Ojo to order the impacted security organisations to stop allowing employees to wear camouflage uniforms right away.
“In view of the foregoing and in the interest of national security, you are kindly requested to direct security and law enforcement agencies under your ministry to withdraw all camouflage uniforms from their personnel and discontinue the use of the outfit with immediate effect.
“You are also requested to take necessary steps and emplace stringent measures to ensure that the ban on the use of camouflage uniforms is upheld, enforced and strictly complied with by all security and enforcement establishments under your Ministry,” he stated.