Abimbola Akosile in Lagos and Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari saturday joined other well-meaning Nigerians to congratulate General Theophilus Danjuma (rtd.) on his 80th birthday anniversary, describing the former chief of army staff, and one-time minister of defence as a “soldiers’ soldier.”
The President in a speech delivered on his behalf at Danjuma’s birthday party by the Secretary to the Federal Government, Mr. Boss Mustapha, described the retired general as “a soldiers’ soldier, who sacrificed for Nigeria.”
The president recalled that at a time when Danjuma could have been head of state following the assasination of General Murtala Mohammed in a botched coup in 1976, he sacrificed for the country.
Buhari also said that he fought during the Nigerian civil war under Danjuma, who was his commander in the 1st and 3rd Divisions.
Also in a congratulatory, letter he personally signed, Buhari rejoiced with the ex-army general and hailed his courage and leadership qualities during the Civil War.
Buhari, who also commended Danjuma’s roles in stabilising the country at different times, described his leadership roles in the country as trajectory and selfless.
According to him, the occasion of his 80th birthday provides an opportunity to express gratitude to him for his philanthropic gesture and his effort in promoting peace in the society.
“On behalf of the Federal Executive Council, my family and all Nigerians, please accept my warm felicitations on your 80th birthday.
“I share in the grace and joy that comes with this special day, having keenly followed your leadership trajectory over the years in selfless service to the nation, courageous military career and building a versatile business empire.
“As you turn 80 years, the meritorious role you played during the Nigerian civil war easily comes to mind, and as a nation, we are grateful for your numerous interventions in the political space to ensure peace, stability and secure a future of one nation for our children.
“I believe your birthday is unique and memorable for the life you live in constantly looking out for the weak and vulnerable among us, which naturally inspired the TY Danjuma Foundation, and more recently, your acceptance to serve as Chairman of the Presidential Committee on North East Initiative,” the president stated.
The president further wished Danjuma God’s blessings of good health and longer life to continue in the service of humanity.
In a related development, All Progressives Congress (APC) National Stalwart, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has said the life of General Danjuma (rtd.) personified the history of Nigeria in many ways.
“All those who know you know that you have always acted with the interests and the wellbeing of our beloved nation in heart and mind. Duty to nation and the preservation of this nation and its progress have been your lodestar,” Tinubu said.
In a moving tribute to Danjuma titled ‘Tinubu to TY Danjuma: Your Life Personifies History of Nigeria’ personally signed by Tinubu and released on Saturday by his Media Office, the APC leader described the retired general as a model soldier and a hero.