Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), inaugurated a suitable official residence for the Regimental Sergeant Major (RSM) of Army Headquarters Garrison at Mogadishu cantonment in Abuja on Tuesday.
The new structure, according to Yahaya, is being built to reinforce fragmentation in the Nigerian Army and improve troop welfare.
He said the official apartments, as well as official vehicles handed to the RSMs, had been established throughout 18 commands, divisions, units, and formations around the country.
RSMs, according to the COAS, occupy a unique position in the Nigerian army’s hierarchy and scheme of things, since they are the keepers of the army’s and its units’ customs and traditions.
Every RSM, he claims, is the father of his unit since he is the keeper of the army’s regimentation, ethics, customs, traditions, and history.
“Since concerns touching soldiers’ administration, particularly their welfare and well-being, are routed through the RSM, he normally has his own office co-located with the commanding officer.”
“He, together with his retinue of other troops, particularly senior Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) and others in that line, establish a hierarchy and chain of command that aids in unit and formation command and regimentation.
“As you know, senior NCOs play a critical role in bridging the gap between officers and soldiers, and the RSM is at the helm of that bridge.
“This crucial RSM post also has its special privileges,” he said, “and that is what I seek to reestablish based on the work of my predecessors.”
Yahaya expressed his wish for an RSM to have suitable living quarters and a vehicle to go around his unit.
He explained that the gesture was intended to instill pride of place in RSMs as well as strengthen regimentation and discipline within the service through command and control.
Maj.-Gen. Kabiru Garba, Commander AHQ Garrison, also spoke, emphasizing the importance of maintaining troops’ welfare in both peace and wartime for a thorough execution of their assigned tasks.
Garba stated that major motivators, such as regular salary payment, knitting, training, and providing suitable housing, were critical in improving the quality of life for troops.
He said the COAS had taken deliberate and determined actions to promote military morale, improve operational effectiveness, and improve professionalism in the Nigerian army since taking office.
All of this, he says, is geared at realizing the COAS’ vision of a professional Nigerian army ready to carry out assigned missions in a joint environment in Nigeria’s defense.
He thanked the COAS for taking the initiative to promote and improve the role of RSMs in the Nigerian army.
AWO Garba Sani, the Garrison RSM, praised the COAS for repositioning the Nigerian army’s fragmentation for increased efficiency and professionalism.
Sani also expressed gratitude to the COAS for giving him and his colleagues RSMs appropriate lodgings and official vehicles to help them perform their duties more effectively.
In the performance of such tasks, he promised to continue to do his best to ensure discipline and professionalism among soldiers under his command.
The official residence of the Garrison RSM, according to our Abuja team, is a nicely furnished three-bedroom cottage with a standby power producing the set, guardhouse, and orderly room.