Buhari donates N10m to Nigerian Legion …Launches 2016 Remembrance Day Emblem
By; SUNDAY ODE, Abuja .
President Muhammadu Buhari on has launched the 2016 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Emblem at the Council Chamber of the Presidential Villa, Abuja with a donation of N10m to the Nigerian Legion.
He called on all Nigerians to appreciate the noble contributions of the nation’s fallen heroes who paid the supreme price to maintain national and international peace and security by donating generously towards the welfare and sustenance of their dependants.
The President also said as part of their support, all Nigerians should buy the emblem, for selves, relations, friends and well wishers, even as he announced that it would soon become a requirement for access into government establishments for staff and visitors.
“I urge and encourage all our distinguished guests to purchase copies of the emblem for their wives, husbands, children, relatives and friends. In future it would be a requirement for all our staff and visitors to wear the emblem to gain access into government establishments,” he stated.
Buhari noted with gratitude at the brief ceremony that the nation had recently celebrated 55 years of political independence and had continued to remain as one indivisible entity despite several previous challenges.
He said: “Since independence, Nigeria has witnessed a lot of internal strife, survived a civil war and has remained united. This feat achieved by the country is an eloquent testimony to the determination of our citizens to remain as one people.
“The sacrifices of our fallen heroes, heroines, and veterans who rose up to the security challenges cannot go un-noticed.”
According to him, it was a necessity to observe the Day annually on 15th of January to commemorate the selfless service of the nation’s gallant troops in military campaigns and wars especially the Nigerian Civil War as well as the current counter terrorism operations being prosecuted by Nigeria’s brave service men.
Noting that the theme of this year’s celebration: “Motivating the Nigerian Armed Forces for Effective Service Delivery” was very apt, the President saluted the courage and sacrifices of men and women of the Armed Forces in grappling with the wave of terrorism, oil theft and piracy in some parts of the country.
“They have displayed unalloyed loyalty and commitment to Nigeria. In their arduous task to keep Nigeria safe and united, some of these gallant officers and men lost their lives. To them we pay special tribute and pray for the repose of their souls.
“Fellow countrymen and women, consider the situation and conditions under which they died or suffered physical incapacitation.
“It behoves on us who are living beneficiaries of their sacrifice to contribute towards the welfare and sustenance of their dependants. Our modest effort will go a long way to demonstrate our depth of gratitude and ameliorate their present condition.”
Buhari commended the Legionnaires, through their umbrella body for their steadfastness, perseverance and exemplary conduct, adding that the members of the body had continued even in retirement to provide excellent services in all spheres of the country’s national life.
Accordingly, he called on well-meaning Nigerians and corporate organizations to lend their support to the worthy initiative. He said: “One of the ways we can appreciate the sacrifices of our fallen heroes and veterans is by making generous donations.
“Further to this, after the emblem launch, I encourage all Nigerians to procure and wear the emblem with pride throughout the remembrance period.
“This would show that we appreciate the sacrifices of our fallen heroes and veterans and also assure those still serving that their services to the fatherland will never be forgotten.”
He assured that Federal Government would continue to show commitment to addressing the challenges facing Veterans, noting that, “The Ministry of Defence has been charged to come up with programmes that would enhance the living standards of the veterans.”
In his remarks at the occasion, the Minister of Defence, Muhammad Dan-Ali, described the event as a unique one coming at a time when the nation was committing so much to the anti-terrorism war.
The ministers noted that since those who gave their lives for the nation had families, Nigerians owed them and their families love and care.
Chairman of the Nigerian Legion, Col. Micah Gayya (rtd.), decorated Buhari; Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; and Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, with the redesigned emblems.