By Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa
The Nigerian military at the weekend warned its officers and men to avoid any political association capable of getting them into trouble.
In two separate religious services held to herald the Armed Forces Remembrance Day attended by senior military officers from the Niger Delta, the military also instructed soldiers to steer clear of hate speeches littering the Nigerian internet space.
The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Central Naval Command, Yenagoa, Rear Admiral Saidu Garba, and his Air Force counterpart, Air Vice Marshal Napoleon Bali, spoke at the headquarters of Operation Delta Safe (OpDS), Igbogene, and the King of Glory Chapel, Government House respectively during the services conducted for Muslim and Christian soldiers.
Garba said the job of the military call for supreme sacrifice and urged Nigerians to always support all the branches of the armed forces.
“Rededicate yourselves to service, avoid all political associations that will put you in trouble. I will always remind you also to keep away or involve yourself in hate messages that is being transmitted in the social media. That is because that is where most of the troubles we found ourselves emanate.
“We are here today to remember our fallen heroes in commemoration of the 2019 Armed Forces Remembrance Day and pray for ourselves. We are all sacrificing our lives in this job. It is a job that calls for the supreme sacrifice and we have all opted to join it,” the FOC said.
At the Government House Chapel, Air Officer Commanding, Mobility Command, Yenagoa, AVM Bali, assured Nigerians that the military will overcome all the security challenges currently bedevilling the country.
He said the activities were meant to encourage the living military men and pay respect to the fallen soldiers, noting that the military will continue to fight to keep Nigeria united.
“Everyday, the armed forces are coming up with new strategies to ensure that wherever they (Boko Haram insurgents) are, we will look for them and neutralise them since they do not want peace.
“We will abide by our constitutional role of ensuring that we protect the territorial integrity and ensuring that we protect the territorial integrity of this nation,” Bali said.
The Bayelsa State Governor Seriake Dickson, who was represented by his Deputy, Rear Admiral John Jonah (rtd), urged Nigerians to celebrate the armed forces always.
He also advised the authorities to take the welfare of soldiers, both retired and serving, very seriously during the service which was attended by Commander 16 Brigade, Brig.Gen Kevin Aligbe, Commander NNS Soroh, Commodore Felix Esekhile, the first Rivers State Governor, Alfred Diette-Spiff and former Military Governor, Navy Capt. Walter Feghabo.