The Commandant Armed Forces Command and Staff College Jaji, Nigeria, Air Vice Marshal Lawal Shittu Alao has inaugurated Junior Course 85 at the Danjuma Hall of the Prestigious institution.
The Junior Course of the College is meant to prepare officers of the rank of captain and equivalent in other services to function at lower level management of men and resources.
Also, the course will reposition the junior officers for effective performance in global peace support operation and international security as well as counter terrorist and counter insurgency operations.
A total of 164 students comprising of 86 for the Nigerian Army, 39 from the Nigerian Navy and 29 from the Nigerian Air Force participated in the inauguration. Additionally 9 from the Allied/Foreign friendly Countries and 1 from MDA’s equally participated.
This Course is the first to be inaugurated by AVM Alao since his assumption of office as the 22nd Commandant of the College.
In his speech at the inauguration, AVM Alao said, “I welcome you students of Junior Course 85 to this great citadel of learning for the Armed Forces of Nigeria, other government agencies and indeed, our friendly subscribing countries.
“Today’s inauguration ceremony, no doubt, marks a very important milestone in your careers. This is because the Junior Staff Course is a determining benchmark for your future prospects, progress and aspirations in this noble profession of arms.
“As you may be aware, the objective of the College is to develop the professional knowledge and understanding of selected officers of the Armed Forces in order to prepare them for increasing responsibilities both in command and staff appointments.
“This implies that, it is not every officer in your category that has been given this rare opportunity to undergo this course. Consequently, the onus is now on you to justify the confidence that your respective Services, agencies and countries have reposed in you. It is our fervent desire that you become better trained officers at the end of this Course.
“I will therefore urge you to imbibe as much as you can while transiting through the 4 walls of the College. This is the only way you can derive maximum benefits from the Course.
“The College is not oblivious of the fact that as members of the Armed Forces, our tasks, responsibilities and challenges are dynamic and are becoming more complex by the day.
“Accordingly, the Junior Course is structured to develop your staff, analytical and communication skills in order to equip you to efficiently operate in single Service, joint, multi-agency and multi-national operations.
“Let me state here that global and national security imperatives have necessitated countries espousing new strategies to address extant and emerging security challenges confronting them.
“In Nigeria, achieving success in the fight against terrorism and insurgency as well as other security threats demands the development of new ways and means.
“To this end, the College reviewed both the Junior and Senior Courses curricula to focus more on asymmetric security challenges in a bid to equip its students to better confront such challenges bedeviling our nation and the world.
“The implementation of the new Junior Course curriculum began with the last course. You will thus be the second set of Junior Course students to benefit from the reviewed curriculum.
“It is my firm belief that by the end of this course, we should have sufficiently built your capacity with the appropriate skillsets to operate as Grade 3 staff officers and equally prepare you to function effectively at the tactical level of the Services of the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
“You must therefore be very adaptive, hardworking and be ready to lay a solid foundation for your chosen career as this course will prepare you for the burden of leadership required of tactical level officers.
“Bear in mind that for you to succeed on the Course, you will need to have a good sense of time management, punctuality, esprit-de-corps, self-confidence and above all, personal discipline as well as drive for knowledge.
“While appreciating that you are not all equally gifted, you must make deliberate and genuine efforts to produce acceptable solutions to all exercises.
“That notwithstanding, I would like to encourage you by stating that you only need to be diligent and hard working to pass through this course. In fact, the popular adage in the College is that; just as you must work very hard to get a good grade; you must also work harder to fail.”
“Let me also re-emphasize the importance the College attaches to intellectual property rights. You must always acknowledge your sources of information, because we view plagiarism with all seriousness.
“Also, since most of your exercise solutions will be submitted in printed form, there is the tendency for some of you to attempt making use of solutions from previous courses or copy from fellow students.
“I will advise against such tendencies as the indefatigable and eagle eyed members of the Directing Staff will easily detect any form of malpractice.
“You should also bear in mind that disobedience and insubordination are viewed with all seriousness in this College. Such offences may deny you from graduating from the College.
“Therefore, do not make yourself a scapegoat because defaulters will feel the full weight of the law as enshrined in the Armed Forces Act.
“You will have no excuse to give to your Service and indeed, your family members if you are withdrawn from the Course for cheating.
“You must also be guided by the College rules and regulations in all your interactions and activities. I am sure you have all read the Joining Instructions and Disciplinary Instructions for Staff and Students. Please, abide by the instructions contained therein.”
“The College recognises that sports and recreation play very important roles in the physical and mental development of an individual.
“Therefore, participation in games and all other College-organized activities are compulsory and must be taken seriously. You should make effective use of the various sporting facilities available at the Cantonment Sports Complex.
“To ensure your physical fitness, you will be expected to cover a mandatory jogging distance of 330km during the Course. Note that this forms part of your ungraded term work, together with your participation in mess activities.”
Present at the occasion were the Deputy Commandant and Director of Studies Rear Admiral Ifeola Mohammed, Directors of the various departments, Chief Instructors, Directing and Administrative Staff of the College.
College Public Relations Officer