OPINION: Celebrating Nigerian Soldier At Nigerian Army Day Celebration 2018

By Brigadier General SK Usman

Today the Nigerian Army is celebrating its day for the year 2018, (NADCEL 2018) in one of the most unique way, a sharp departure from the usual parade, combat march past,  weaponry and equipment displays usually at the Eagle Square in Abuja or any of the big cities in the country. That is not the style of Nigerian Army of today under the able leadership of the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General TY Buratai, a soldier’s soldier and the man who made history as the world acknowledged arrowhead and commander of the fight against terrorism and insurgency in our country.

What makes this year’s Army Day Celebration quite unique is the fact that it is taking place in Borno State, North East Nigeria. Some years back, it is unimaginable to visit Maiduguri for whatever reason, let alone venturing as far as Monguno. In addition, The Nigerian Army has been showcasing its innovations, research and development and technological advancement in the art of warfare and other aspects of human endeavours. Little wonder that the theme for this year’s celebration is “The Nigerian Army and National Security: A Panacea for Nigeria’s Economic Development”. According to the Chief of Army Staff during a press conference on 29th June 2018,   the  Army  is  “determined  more  than  ever  before  to contribute its quota to national development.”

What can we say other than to be happy, proud and thankful to be part of the Nigerian Army at this point in time of our national history because of the unprecedented accomplishments and a great sense of professionalism? The theme is also in line with his vision, which is “to have a  Professionally Responsive Nigerian Army in the discharge of its Constitutional Roles”.

I, therefore, want to take this opportunity to further pray for the souls of our departed heroic, selfless and gallant officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army who paid the supreme sacrifice or sustained injuries in the course of defending our great nation over time. Their sacrifices would never be in vain. May God grant all those wounded in action speedy recovery. I also want to celebrate and rejoice with my colleagues; the gallant officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army whose patriotism and sense of duty made them place Nigeria before self and willing to pay the supreme sacrifice of giving one’s life for the sake of our great nation If need be.

“I enjoined all Nigerians to appreciate the Armed Forces of Nigeria and the Nigerian Army at this auspicious annual occasion of the Nigerian Army Day Celebration 2018, for doing the nation proud. The Nigerian soldier is second to none in courage, perseverance, loyalty, patriotism, love for peace and humanity. Thank you so much for daring to thread where no mortals dare and conquer Nigeria’s enemies. Your enormous sacrifice enduring harsh climatic and social conditions of leaving your families behind for the frontline for Nigerians to enjoy peace, liberty and development, makes you special. The pride you brought to Nigeria is unimaginable and would continually be remembered.” Congratulations as we celebrate yet another Nigerian Army Day today!

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