The Nigerian Army Institute of Technology and Environmental Studies in Biu, Borno State, has been upgraded to a University, says the Chief of Army Staff, COAS, Tukur Buratai.
Buratai made the disclosure on Monday during the opening ceremony of the Chief of Army Staff First Quarter Conference 2017 held at the newly commissioned Multipurpose Hall of the Command Guest House, Maiduguri.
The COAS said that the institution “was conceived as a unique university that would be different from conventional universities in Nigeria.”
“The concept is to make it a solution provider and a centre of excellence for variety of technologically related ventures such as generation and armament production.
“In pursuant of this laudable initiative, the Borno state government has allocated 5000 hectares of land located in Biu for this purpose.”
Buratai noted that this year’s COAS First Quarter Conference was unique given that it precedes the consolidation of defeat of the Boko Haram insurgents with the successful conduct of the Nigerian Army Small Arms Championship, NASAC, 2017 at the Sambisa Forest.
He promised that the Nigerian Army under his leadership would continue to ensure “improved Infrastructural development and increase in equipment holding through effective maintenance culture.”
The Army chief also pledged that the military will continue to pay special attention to the protection of Children victims of the insurgency, as well as keep supporting UNICEF and other NGOs to provide humanitarian service to children and victims of insurgency wherever they are.
On ways to enhance Army/Civilian relations, Buratai said: “I have directed the establishment of Nigerian Army Information Call Centre to enable the Nigerian public to reach the Nigerian Army through dedicated telephone lines on issues of security and other emergencies.
“I therefore, enjoin all commanders to educate troops under their commands and to work towards the realization of professional and responsive Army”.
Borno state Governor, Kashim Shettima, while declaring the conference open, commended the Army for the establishment of various educational institutions in the state, including the Army University of Technology and Environmental Studies in Biu; Command Girls secondary School, Miringa and Command Boys Secondary School in Auno.
The Governor who was represented by his deputy, Usman Durkwa, pledged the administration’s continued support for the military in their efforts to restore total peace to the state.
Also speaking at the event, the UNICEF Country Representative, Muhammad Malik Fal commended the Nigerian Army for providing protection and security for UN agencies and others NGOs to provide humanitarian services.