The Minister of Defence retired Maj.-Gen. Bashir Magashi has urged the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) to continue providing enhanced and timely intelligence support for the ongoing military operations across the country.

Magashi made the call during the inauguration of the agency’s staff housing estate at Kiyami District, Abuja, on Thursday.

He said as the nation was currently facing security challenges resulting in higher demands on its resources, he suggested that up to date intelligence would aid successful conduct of operations against insurgents, bandits, kidnappers and other criminal elements.

According to him, the DIA must therefore continue to play a pivotal role in providing intelligence support for the conduct of military operations.

“Let me, therefore, assure the agency of my continuous support towards the attainment of its mandate for which it was established.

“At this juncture, I wish to express sincere gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari, for his continuous support to the intelligence agency and the Armed Forces in general in spite of the difficult economic realities.

“With this support, the ministry will not relent in its efforts to continue to boost the morale of personnel of the Armed Forces for enhanced efficiency,” he said.

Magashi commended DIA for providing a befitting housing complex to bridge the accommodation gap and motivate its members of staff.

According to him, there is therefore no doubt that output at work will be greatly enhanced when personnel are well quartered in decent accommodation.

He also commended the Chief of Defence Intelligence (CDI), Air Vice Marshal Muhammed Usman, for naming the estate after the former Chief of Defence Intelligence, late Air Vice Marshal Idi Musa.

According to him, Late Idi Musa was instrumental to the enviable status of DIA and the naming is timely and well-intentioned.

Earlier, the CDI, Air Vice Marshall Usman, said the housing project was part of his determination to reposition the agency and improve on its overall service delivery.

Usman said that the agency focused on five imperatives such as redefinition of its roles, objectives and the structure necessary to perform, capacity building and career development.

He said it also focused on capability enhancement; forging of national and international synergies and cooperation as well as personnel welfare.

According to him, these measures have led to having a better perspective of national security challenges, as well as, to articulate and actualise improved integrated responses within the overall all-of-the-nation effort.

“I am therefore comforted that the Defence Intelligence Agency I leave behind is better suited and far more capable to defend the nation and its good people by providing timely and accurate intelligence to aid military operations.

“Let me at this point state that I understand how easy it could be for many in the country to be cynical or discouraged by the threat picture that we face every day.

“I want to assure us that there are dedicated people who are working diligently every day with a determination to rid the country of the pervading insecurity,” he said.

Usman said competencies and capabilities of the personnel had been developed to enable quicker responses and timely actionable intelligence to response action against threats.

He said the projection of the achievement was the training and deployment of the DIA Special Strike Team with the skill sets to act and conduct special operations.

He added that a Geospatial Intelligence Data Analysis Centre was successfully realised among other achievements.

The CDI disclosed that the desire to improve the housing situation of the staff led to the construction of a series of living quarters as well as recreational, business, worship and other ancillary facilities.

According to him, the estate contains a mix of 32 studio rooms, eight one-bedroom flats, 92 two-bedroom flats, six 3-bed room flats, 16 4-bed room duplexes and four 5-bed room duplexes respectively.

“Others include a shopping plaza, church, mosque, medical centre and a fire station.

“I pray that this project would allow our staff to live happier and healthier lives, and as such spur them to add greater value in their service to the country,” he said.