Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff, has attributed some attacks on military bases to insufficient commitment of some soldiers.
In recent times, the Nigerian army has suffered many attacks from the Boko Haram sect, especially in Borno State.
Just last week, insurgents hit a military formation in the state, killing at least six soldiers.
Some weeks before that attack, Boko Haram fighters killed 25 military personnel in an ambush, still in Borno.
Speaking at the opening of a five-day leadership workshop for mid-level officers and soldiers in Abuja, the army chief said the unwillingness of some soldiers to perform is affecting the success of the counter-insurgency operations.
“It is unfortunate, but the truth is that almost every setback the Nigerian Army has had in our operations in recent times can be traced to insufficient willingness to perform assigned tasks or simply insufficient commitment to a common national and military course by those on the frontlines,” he said.
“Many of those on whom the responsibility for physical actions against the adversary squarely falls are yet to fully take ownership of our common national or service cause. And this is the reason why I have always ensured that the promotion of army personnel is essentially based on professional considerations only.
“But we all know that professional capacity is not a sufficient condition to succeed in a task; willingness to perform the task is equally necessary. We all know that leadership is core to military professionalism; hence all military professional courses include aspects of military leadership skills acquisition.”
Buratai cautioned officers under that category to leave the army as soon as possible, saying the military can no longer tolerate them in the service.
“Hence the theme of the workshop has been aptly chosen as ‘Lead, follow or get out of the way,” he said.