Buhari, Osinbajo, others honour fallen heroes

Buhari, Osinbajo, others honour fallen heroes
January 15 22:29 2017

President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday led senior government functions to perform the annual ritual of laying wreaths in honour of soldiers who died in active service.

The ceremony, held at the National Arcade, was attended by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, President of the Senate, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara and the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen.

Others were the Minister of Defence, Mr. Mansard Dan Ali; Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mr. Mohammed Bello; Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai; Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. Ibrahim Idris and the National Chairman of the Nigerian Legion, retired Colonel Micah Gaya, among others.

January 15th of every year is set aside to honour the fallen heroes in the country, and this year’s ceremony started at 10.00 a.m. when the President arrived the National Arcade and inspected the guards of honour.

Muslim and Christian prayers were offered for the repose of the souls of the departed soldiers and the unity and prosperity of the country and its peoples.

A minute silence was also observed in honour of the departed soldiers and gun salute.

The President also signed the register and released white pigeons at the event. He also had video-conference with Nigeria troops in Sambisa Forest, United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) and the Air Force Base in Yola.‎

The names of the Commanders in the three locations that interacted with the President are‎ Major General Victor Ezugwu, Acting GOC, 7 Division, Nigerian Army (‎Sambisa)‎, Major General Salihu Uba, Force Commander‎ (UNMIL), ‎Air Commodore Charles Owoh, Air Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole (Air Force Base Yola).

The President said to the troops in Sambisa that they “have done Nigeria a great pride. Your success was well received by all Nigerians. Well done.  I wish you more successes. And maintain the standard for efficiency in your assignment. ‎Your success was received spontaneously by all Nigerians. I congratulate you and I thank you very much for the honour done to the country and to us. Well done! I wish you and your families well and I hope that you are in touch with your families. I wish you more success and please maintain the standard of discipline and efficiency. Thank you very much indeed.‎”‎

After the briefing, the GOC in the Sambisa Forest led the troop to give three happy cheers to the President.

‎At the other video conference, the told Major General Uba that the final batch of Nigerian troops will exit from Liberia by 2018.

“We thank God and we thank technology for this. I can see you and I can hear you. I am impressed with the turnout of your men and I thank you for keeping the flag flying on the performance of Nigerian military in the United Nations peacekeeping operations. God willing as you briefed us, in 2018, the last contingent of Nigeria troops in Liberia will come back. I sincerely wish them a successful operation and I wish the General the best of luck,” he said.

The troops in Liberia also gave three happy cheers to the President after the Force Commander briefed the President.

The President also spoke with Air Commodore  Owoh, who is the Air Commander of Operation Lafia Dole at the Air Force base in Yola,  Adamawa State.

He said to Owoh: “That was a good presentation. I get regular briefing from your Chief of Air Staff. Your performance speaks for itself and you have raised the morale of your colleagues in the military especially the army. With your hi-tech performance and platforms, we have been able to restore the sanity and the territorial integrity of Nigeria; I congratulate you.

“For the officers and men, you know you cannot be over-trained. With your hi-tech outfit, training has to be continuous and I am very pleased with the initiative that you have taken in maintenance of equipment. It is very encouraging and a boost to our morale here. I congratulate you and please pass my message to your families that we are very mindful of their patience and anxiety whenever you are in the field. Thank you very much indeed.‎”