Access the meaning and characteristic of the military institution with reference to the Nigerian Arm forces.
DEFINITION OF “MILITARY”:
The term military is an institution of forces authorized to use deadly force, and weapons, to support the interests of the state and some or all of its citizens.
The task of the military is usually defined as defense of the state and its citizens, and the prosecution of war against another state. The military may also have additional sanctioned and non-sanctioned functions within a society, including, the promotion of a political agenda, protecting corporate economic interests, internal population control, construction, emergency services, social ceremonies, and guarding important areas. The military can also function as a discrete subculture within a larger civil society, through the development of separate infrastructures, which may include housing, schools, utilities, food production and banking.
Military history is often considered to be the history of all conflicts, not just the history of the state militaries. It differs somewhat from the history of war with military history focusing on the people and institutions of war-making while the history of war focuses on the evolution of war itself in the face of changing technology, governments, and geography.
Military history has a number of purposes. One main purpose is to learn from past accomplishments and mistakes so as to more effectively wage war in the future. Another is to create a sense of military tradition which is used to create cohesive military forces. Still another may be to learn to prevent wars more effectively. Human knowledge about the military is largely based on both recorded and oral history of military conflicts (war), their participating armies and navies and, more recently, air forces.
There are two types of military history, although almost all texts have elements of both: descriptive history that serves to chronicle conflicts without offering any statements about the causes, nature of conduct, the ending and effects of a conflict; and analytical history that seeks to offer statements about the causes, nature, ending and aftermath of conflicts as a means of deriving knowledge and understanding of conflicts as a whole, and prevent repetition of mistakes in future, to suggest better concepts or methods in employing forces, or to advocate the need for new technology.
Nigeria's military is the largest in West Africa, but is significantly less capable than its size and equipment inventory would indicate. A large percentage of the Army is capable of little more than basic defensive operations, and most of Nigeria's ships and aircraft are inoperable. The leadership of the military, from junior to senior levels, recognizes the role that the Armed Forces play as Nigeria's most effective national institution, and the principal one committed to its unity.
A lack of investment in training, failure to maintain equipment and dwindling cooperation with Western forces has damaged Nigeria's armed services. Unlike Nigerian peacekeepers in the 1990s, who were effective in curbing ethnic bloodshed in Sierra Leone and Liberia, those in Mali in 2013 lacked the equipment and training needed to be of much help against al-Qaida-linked forces. In 2014 security swallowed nearly 938 billion naira ($5.8 billion), a quarter of the federal budget. Of that, the defense ministry took more than a third, but only 10 percent was for capital spending. Corruption is a factor in the shortfalls A, SS senior officer’s pocket money meant for equipment. When democracy returned in 1999, President Olusegun Obasanjo, a former military man, feared the army. The starvation of the military occurred since Obasanjo, as a strategy to ensure they couldn't conduct more coups.
As a large, complex organization, the Nigerian military contains a number of contradictions, incongruities, and internal disjunctions. It is the largest, most capable military in West Africa with major foreign deployments under ECOWAS and the AU, as well as extensive UN PKO commitments. At the same time, chronic under-resourcing has led to low operational readiness, lack of training, and relatively poor conditions of service. These problems, along with endemic corruption, have made the Nigerian military somewhat of a hollow giant resting on its reputation -- more capable than any other force in the sub-region, but considerably less capable than it should be with tens of thousands of troops and a large stock of major weapons systems and other equipment. A high percentage of the heart of the force -- the 60,000-soldier strong Army's 25 infantry battalions -- are capable of little more than basic defensive operations.
THE NIGERIAN ARM FORCES:
The Nigerian Armed Forces are the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The military has active duty personnel in three armed services, totaling approximately 200,000 troops and 300,000 paramilitary personnel.
Its origins lie in the elements of the Royal West African Frontier Force that became Nigerian when independence was granted in 1960. In 1956 the Nigeria Regiment of the Royal West African Frontier Force (RWAFF) was renamed the Nigerian Military Forces, RWAFF, and in April 1958 the colonial government of Nigeria took over from the British War Office control of the Nigerian Military Forces.
Since its creation the Nigerian military has fought in a civil war – the conflict with Biafra in 1967–70 – and sent peacekeeping forces abroad both with the United Nations and as the backbone of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Cease-fire Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) in Liberia and Sierra Leone. It has also seized power twice at home (1966 & 1983).
In the aftermath of the civil war, the much expanded size of the military, around 250,000 in 1977, consumed a large part of Nigeria’s resources under military rule for little productive return. The great expansion of the military during the civil war further entrenched the existing military hold on Nigerian society carried over from the first military regime. In doing so, it played an appreciable part in reinforcing the military’s nearly first-among-equals status within Nigerian society, and the linked decline in military effectiveness.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE MILITARY INSTITUTION:
The functional characteristic of a country’s military institution with reference to the Nigerian armed forces is entrenched in her Constitution. Also defense of the territorial integrity with other core interests of the nation form the major substance of such roles.
Section 217 of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria addresses the Nigerian Armed Forces:
1. There shall be an arm forces for the Federation which shall consist of an army, a navy, an air force and such other branches of the armed forces of the Federation as may be established by an Act of the National Assembly.
2. The Federation shall, subject to an Act of the National Assembly made in that behalf, equip and maintain the armed forces as may be considered adequate and effective for the purpose of –
(a) Defending Nigeria from external aggression;
(b) Maintaining its territorial integrity and securing its borders from violation on land, sea, or air;
(c) Suppress insurrection and act in aid of civil authorities to restore order when called upon to do so by the d. President but subject to such conditions as may be prescribed by an Act of the National Assembly.
(d) Perform such other functions as may be prescribed by an act of the National Assembly.
3. The composition of the officer corps and other ranks of the armed forces of the Federation shall reflect the federal character of Nigeria.