By Our correspondents
Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has commended the remarkable and patriotic sacrifices of the country’s military personnel in the line of duty and in the defence of the country.
The former vice president made the statement shortly after his arrival from an overseas trip at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja yesterday.
A statement released by his media office to mark this year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day, quoted the former vice president as observing that since the end of the civil war in 1970, members of our armed forces have not faced greater challenges than today in the face of counterterrorism war against the Boko Haram insurgents.
Atiku Abubakar said apart from sapping energy and resources, counterterrorism is one of the most stressful security duties, adding that the performance of our military personnel under these gruelling challenges “is admirable and praiseworthy.”
According to Atiku, laying down one’s life for the sake of others is the highest sacrifices, explaining that these officers and men are driven by sheer patriotism and love of fellow citizens.
He noted that any group of people who can overcome fear for the call of duty and love of one’s country deserve the greatest honour, respect and rewards from their societies.
Atiku also stated that he was impressed beyond words by the recent military successes against the Boko Haram insurgents, including the successful assault on the notorious terrorists den, the Sambisa Forest, which he says has sent a clear message that criminals, cannot defeat law and order permanently.
He paid special tributes to the officers and men who lost their lives in the line of duty or battle field, and called on the authorities to take adequate care of the families of fallen heroes.
Tambuwal Seeks Support for Families of wgd56789Heroes
Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, yesterday said one of the best ways to honour Nigeria’s fallen heroes is to take care of their families.
Speaking at an event to commemorate the 2017 Armed Forces Remembrance Day held at Maigero Theater in Sokoto, Tambuwal said this could be done by providing opportunities for their children and empowering their widows
Tambuwal commended the military for their sacrifice in helping to secure the nation.
He said as people who have given their lives to protect others, members of the armed forces deserve the nation’s gratitude at all times.
“On this important day, we should always continue to support their families and encourage the ones still in active service to give their maximum best in the service of the fatherland.
“Today’s event is significant because it shows that we are a people of history who also appreciate our history. It also shows that there are people who paid the supreme sacrifice for us to get to where we are today as one, united and happy nation.
“We should continue to learn from their sacrifices to ensure that Nigeria remains a united country where everyone is enjoying the freedom as enshrined in our constitution. We should at all times make our contributions to national development,” he said.
This year’s event featured medical outreach organised by the armed forces as well as parade and laying of wreath in honour of the fallen service men.
Wike Sets up N100m Empowerment for Ex-servicemen
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has initiated a N100million Empowerment Scheme aimed at improving the living condition of the families of late ex-servicemen and living legionnaires.
The governor, Deputy Governor Ipalibo Harry Banigo , Speaker Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani, Chief Judge, Justice Adama Iyayi-Lamikanra, service commanders and the Chairman of the Rivers State Traditional Rulers Council, King Dandeson Jaja, also laid wreaths in honour of fallen soldiers at the cenotaph of the unknown soldier.
Addressing legionnaires at the 2017 Armed Forces and Remembrance Day celebration finale at the open court of the Government House, Port Harcourt yesterday, Wike said the N100million empowerment scheme was an appreciation of the fact that the late ex-servicemen and their living colleagues invested their lives in the sustenance of the country.
He said: “This empowerment scheme is to show the families of late ex-servicemen and their living colleagues that we appreciate the sacrifices they made for the country.
“We don’t want the families they left behind to continue to suffer. I urge the Nigerian Legion to carefully manage the empowerment scheme in a way that the wives of late ex-servicemen and other legionnaires will benefit and set up businesses to sustain themselves.”
He called on corporate citizens and privileged Nigerians to take practical steps to appreciate members of the Nigerian Legion and their families.
The governor said that the remembrance of the sacrifices of living and late members of the armed forces should go beyond the annual ritual of Armed Forces and Remembrance Day celebration.
El-Rufai Pledges Support for Security Agencies
Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, has said the state government will continue to give all necessary support to the security agencies to ensure peace and stability in the state.
Speaking yesterday at the Armed Forces Remembrance Day, El-Rufai saluted the military for laying their lives for the nation.
He stressed that with the military capacity and capability, emergence of new threat of banditry particularly in the North-west and North-eentral of Nigeria would be crushed like insurgency.
According to him, the performance of the military has been commendable, particularly from the beginning of the end of 2015.
“We are very proud of our armed forces for their achievement, we have seen the decimation of Boko Haram, but at the same time, we have seen the emergence of new threat of banditry, particularly in North-west and North-central of Nigeria.
“Things would have been much worse, but for the support we have received from the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Air Force, Nigerian Navy, the police and other security agencies.
So, we are very proud of their performance and we commend them for their patriotism and the risk that they take. This government has from day one committed to supporting federal security agencies to raise the levels of peace and security in the state.
“We have spent a large amount of money to support them with logistics, materials to ensure that our state is as safe as possible, and we will continue to do so,” he said.
Ambode: Fallen Heroes Offered Greatest Sacrifice for Our Unity
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, yesterday emphasised the significance of remembering the fallen heroes, noting that they all fought hard and paid the greatest price for the unity of Nigeria.
Retired officers of the Nigerian Armed Forces (NAF) also demanded a review of the emblem price for the Armed Forces Remembrance Day, urging President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene.
The duo spoke yesterday after the laying of wreath and release of pigeons to mark the 2017 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration held at Remembrance Arcade, Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS), Lagos.
Also at the celebration are the Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Mudashiru Obas, Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Olufunmilayo Atilade, Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu and serving commanders of military and para-military formations in the state, among others.
Ambode stressed the need for the continuous remembrance of the fallen heroes who laid their lives for the unity of the country, saying that the country must remain united to celebrate and honour them.
He acknowledged that the import of the celebration could not be overemphasised, noting that it signified the great sacrifice put in by the fallen heroes “to ensure the unity of the country.
“For every January 15, we come together to remember our past heroes. The whole essence of being Nigerians is for us to live as a united country. Some people have laid their lives for us to be here today.
Aregbesola Commends Buhari, Security Agencies for Subduing Boko Haram.
The Osun State Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, has commended the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari, the armed forces and other security agencies in subduing the activities of Boko Haram group in the North-eastern part of the country.
The governor while addressing the people at the grand finale of the 2017 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration, at the Military Cenotaph, Osogbo, lauded security agencies in the country for destroying the Sambisa forest base of the group.
Aregbesola stated that the nation would not forget the gallant soldiers and security officials whose lives have been lost in the cause of putting down the Boko Haram uprising.
He commiserated with the government and people of the northern states of Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe, Bauchi, Taraba and others caught in the throes of the group, whose people have been brutalised, killed or kidnapped and many who are now in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps.
Aregbesola, who described peace as the indispensable means of existence, said the roles being played by the security agents in the country to continuously engender peaceful coexistence among Nigerians can never be over-emphasized since the discovery of Nigeria.
Mimiko: Work for Peace to Honour Fallen Heroes
Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, said yesterday that the best way to honour the nation’s fallen heroes is for all Nigerians, particularly the leaders to work for work can bring peace to the country.
Mimiko stated this in Akure, the state capital, during the celebration of the 2017 Armed Forces Remembrance Day, held at the Alagbaka Cenotaph.
The governor, who was among those that laid the wreath in honour of the fallen heroes, said the leadership has the primary responsibilities of working for those things that would bring peace to the country.
“We cannot continue to pretend that things are normal in this country. We must therefore examine all issues that led to the emergence of various centrifugal forces in our nation.
“We should examine ourselves and ask ourselves a question whether we are doing what can bring peace to our nation. We should examine our federalism and see whether it can bring peace as being practiced and if we are convinced that reviewing it can bring peace, we must do this.”
Ayade Expresses Gratitude to Military
Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State yesterday expressed gratitude to the country’s fallen heroes who died in active service for the country.
He stated that their sacrifice for the country is a remarkable commitment that would never be forgotten.
Ayade insisted that the legacy of their death has remained a great strength for the country.
According to him, the nation could not thank them enough for “giving their all to keep the rest of us alive and to keep Nigeria one united country.
“For this, their commitment and strong faith in Nigeria will never be betrayed as all Nigerians are very grateful for their sacrifice to their beloved fatherland.”
Ayade, who spoke through his deputy, Professor Ivara Esu, at the wreath laying ceremony to round off the armed forces remembrance week at the Millennium Park in Calabar, urged the Federal Government to continue to support the legion, widows and children of the fallen heroes to ensure they and their families are adequately taken care of.
His words: “These great Nigerians have paid so much price for the unity and peace of our great nation. We must not fail their great commitment to our beloved country.
“It is our duty to honour their great sacrifice by providing a shoulder for their loved ones they left behind. These men and women who died to keep our country safe are indeed great heroes we must continue to honour and appreciate for their faithfulness to a noble cause.”
Amosun Commends Military over Fight against Insurgents
Officers and men of the armed forces have once again, been commended for their gallantry and successes so far recorded in the fight against the Boko Haram insurgency.
Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, gave the commendation while speaking with journalists shortly after inspecting a special parade by the Nigerian Legion, the navy and the Nigerian Army, during the 2017 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration, held at the Arcade Ground, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, yesterday.
While thanking the military for restoring peace in the North-east region of the country, Amosun urged all Nigerians to live in unity, irrespective of differences in gender, tribe, religion and political affiliation.
Amosun, along side top officers in the military and the Paramount Rulers in the state, earlier took turns to lay the wreath at the cenotaph in honour of fallen heroes.
The governor also released 57 white pigeons as a symbol of national peace, with each pigeon representing the 20 local governments and 37 Local Council Development Areas of the state.
The fallen heroes were later honoured with a 21-gun salute, after which the ceremony was wrapped up with a march-out of the colour party and the rest of the parade.