BENIN CITY: As Edo State joins its counterparts across the nation to celebrate the 2017 Armed Forces Remembrance Day, the Executive Governor of the State Mr. Godwin Obaseki has commended the Nigeria Armed Forces for their commitment and courage in the fight against insurgency and their ability to protect the territorial integrity of the nation.
The governor who was represented by his Deputy Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu made the commendation yesterday during the celebration of the Armed Forces Remembrance Day at the Museum ground, King’s Square, Benin City venue for the celebration.
He said every January 15th remains sacrosanct in the history of Nigeria because it is a day set aside to honour the country’s fallen heroes; those who paid the supreme price for the protection and defense of the corporate existence of our country, Nigeria.
Speaking with journalists, the Deputy Governor said the serving military officers both men and women in the country deserve utmost respect. “For me, today is to reflect on the corporate existence of this country and at the same time to remember that while we were sleeping some people had a sleepless night in protecting the country and her citizens. In the cause of doing their job, some were incapacitated while some others died in the line of duty as such we the civilian should show them respect”.
“Again, I salute their gallantry over the success they recorded in the recovery of some territories from the Boko Haram insurgents especially their stronghold, the Sambisa Forest”.
Hon. Shaibu however emphasized that the only best way to appreciate both the fallen heroes and the serving ones is to remain patriotic, that is to think of Nigeria first in all that we do as a people so that those that fought for the country would be happy where ever they are. “If we are patriotic by supporting government, the issue of recession and restiveness would be addressed simultaneously, insisting that all of these can only be addressed collectively”.
He urged the federal government to put in place a special scheme to take care of our veterans so that their lives would not deteriorate after leaving service which can also serve as impetus for the younger military officers.
Also speaking, the Chairman of the Nigerian Legion, Edo State Chapter, Assistant Commandant General Osawaru Johnbull Awanbor (rtd) commended the state government for its support over the years.
He expressed their readiness to still serve, calling on the state governor to engage them to still contribute their quota to the development of the state as they are retired but not tired.
“We want the state governor to engage us. We can still assist the government especially in the area of enforcement. You see, after government have spent so much money in constructing drains and other facilities, people do not appreciate them.
They drop refuse everywhere, trade on walk ways. So we can help in these areas in assisting the government in enforcing the laws”.
Retires Commander Awanbor assured government to voluntary rendering their service to the state.
The high point of the event is the laying of wreaths at the cenotaph, 21 gun salute, release of pigeons signifying peace and love, as well as parades by men and officers of the 4-Brigade Headquarters Nigeria Army, 107 Maritime group, Air force, and the Nigeria Legion.