A Nigerian World War II and Civil War veteran, Pa Mele Wamlara Ture has lamented the ongoing war against Boko Haram insurgents who have ravaged the country, killing thousands of people and displacing many others for over a decade.
The Gombe-born war veteran said terrorism has become a pandemic for Nigeria.
He noted that the Nigerian Army has the capacity to crush Boko Haram terrorists in one hour but lamented that they have been overpowered, in an interview with Sunday Punch.
"It is unfortunate that Nigeria has turned to something else because it is beyond imagination that Boko Haram will stay for this long as if we don’t have leaders. It portrays the military like there are no personnel to stop them. For me, ending this is a matter of one hour. Right now I don’t know what has gone wrong.
"Had it been our leaders paid attention, by undertaking a critical evaluation of the bombing of facilities by the (Boko Haram) sect, a solution would have appeared; this war wouldn’t have stayed this long. Right now, it has become a pandemic to the country.
"I call on governors and the president to find solutions to all these issues. The leaders should improve the well-being of both medical doctors and teachers. For the military, the motivation mechanism is there already," Ture said.
Speaking on the two wars he fought, he noted, "The world war was hotter than the civil war because for the civil war I considered it as a brotherly fight. I didn’t see it as a war but as a game because most of my colleagues did not die much in the civil war.
"Most Igbos died of hunger, not bullet. I sympathised with some of my Igbo brothers in the face of the attack; I saw it as killing my brother; unlike the white man who I didn’t know."
When asked about the current agitation for secession in the country, he said "I have no comment on that; it is left for the government; if they feel it is just to divide the country that’s for them. I don’t support the break-up."