The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has reacted to a statement attributed to Shuaibu Ibrahim, its director-general, that corps members can be mobilised for war if need be.

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On Thursday, the director-general of the scheme had said that corps members are part of the country’s national defense policy and can therefore be trained in the case of a serious war.

“Corps members are on reserve. They are part of the national defense policy of this country. So, where there is serious war, our corps members are educated, they are knowledgeable and they can be trained,” Ibrahim had said.

“You see the drill and so on. You can imagine within the short three weeks in the orientation camps, the corps members are moulded. They are like soldiers. You see female corps members blowing the army horn, playing with the military band.

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“So, if not for the knowledge, where are you going to mobilise such young Nigerians to train them quickly to put in their best for the country? So, corps members are on reserve. They are also part of the national defence policy.”

His comment had sparked nationwide outrage, with many Nigerians taking to social media to lambast the scheme.

But in a rebuttal issued on Friday, the NYSC said its DG’s comment was misrepresented, adding that no corps member is being mobilised for war.

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The scheme also explained that the DG was only reflecting on the ease of adaptability to military training among corps members because of their level of education and exposure.

It added that it was unfortunate that some had already misinterpreted the comment to mean “corps members are being trained for war.”

“This is to clarify the misrepresentation of the NYSC Director-General’s recent interview with the media currently trending on the social media,” it read.

“The director-general had stated that in line with the National Defence Policy, corps members are like soldiers on reserve, because their education, exposure and sophistication, can make them easily adaptable to military training.

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“He charged them to remain focused and patriotic; and for the spirit of NYSC to live in all Nigerians.

“General Ibrahim never at any point said that corps members are being mobilised to fight war. The scheme shall continue to safeguard the interest of Corps Members at all times.”



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