Maj.-Gen. Abba Dikko has been appointed the new Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole in Maiduguri, in a major redeployment of senior officers announced by the Nigerian Army on Friday.
The exercise sees Maj.-Gen. C.O. Udeh, the Chief of Transformation and Innovation takes over as the new Commander, Multinational Joint Task Force –MNJTF – in Ndemena. Udeh takes over from Maj.-Gen. Lucky Irabor, who has been redeployed to the Defence Headquarters as the Chief of Defence Training and Operations.
The Nigerian Army’s full press release is here. The press release basically states that Chief of Army Staff Tukur Buratai is the one making these personnel changes.
Dikko has been commanding Operation Last Hold, which began this May 1 and which you can read about here and here. It appears that Dikko will, for the time being, be “wearing a double cap as the Theatre Commander as well as Commander Operation Last Hold.”
Irabor, it may be recalled, was himself commander of Lafiya Dole from March 2016 until May 2017. Lafiya Dole is the anti-Boko Haram operation. And there’s a lot of turnover among its commanders. With the 2019 election now very close, politically speaking, I wonder if we won’t see more pressure on the senior officers and perhaps even another rotation before the vote.