By Deborah Coker
The Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Christopher Musa, on Saturday night in Abuja reaffirmed his commitment to upholding the ideals and principles guiding the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
Musa said this at the 37 Regular Course 38th anniversary of gratitude and the investiture of immediate past Chief of Army Staff, retired Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, as the Grand Patron of the Course.
He expressed his belief that the success of the nation’s military life, not only in its operational progress but also in the unwavering support and trust of its veterans had been the bedrock of the nation’s defence.
“I remain committed to upholding the ideals and principles that have guided our armed forces throughout history.
“It is my solemn duty to ensure that the sacrifices made by each and every member of the service regular courses are duly acknowledged,” he said.
He added that the dedication and service of the armed forces veterans to the country, as well as their commitment to the ideals of duty, honour and loyalty had been source of encouragement.
“This is because they had been guarding the sovereignty of the country and protecting its citizens.
“Your actions both on and off the battlefield have set the highest standards of professionalism and integrity, serving as a channel example for all who have followed in your footsteps.
“Moreover, as we reflect upon the challenges faced by our Armed Forces throughout these years, it is impossible to overlook the pivotal role some regular course members have played in shaping the course of our military history.
“Your collective expert as strategic acumen and operational brilliance has been instrumental in ensuring the safety and security of our great nation.
“Nigeria stands tall today as a beacon of peace and stability in our region,” he said.
Lauding the immediate past COAS, Musa said that Yahaya’s influence and impact had continued to reverberate throughout the nation’s Armed Forces.
“The knowledge and experiences you have shared with your subordinates have shaped, the next generation of military leaders instilling in them the values of courage, discipline and resilience.
“You enduring legacy is not only measured by the battles fought and won, but also by the lives you have touched and indomitable spirit you have instilled in the military ranks.
“In recognising your remarkable achievement, it is important to acknowledge that the challenges we face in the realm of defence and security are ever evolving as we navigate an increasingly complex and interconnected wall.
“It is imperative therefore that we continue to learn from wisdom and experiences from those who came before us.
“Your insights and counsels remain invaluable assets, and I assure you that your voice will continue to be heard and respected as we forge ahead in safeguarding our nation’s future,” he said.
Yahaya in his remarks appreciated his course mates for the honour done to him.
He said that the gesture of oneness and togetherness among the course 37 members had come a long way and appealed that it should not only be sustained but improved upon
“This gesture of oneness and togetherness have come a long way. We are talking about four decades of togetherness.
“So we should not relent but to continue and even seek better ways or more ways of improving in what we are doing. Time is changing, so we must move with time upon our mind and our hearts, not forgetting the essence.
“While this organisation is here. Every time we must reflect why and then continue to seek for improvement,” the former COAS said.
Earlier, the chairman of the occasion, retired Admiral Ola Sa’ad Ibrahim, former Chief of Defence Staff, said that the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), had produced quality number of armed forces for the country.
He also said that the country had also nurtured a group of young Nigerians as military personnel, because while at NDA they picked degrees.
“So the modern day officers of the country forces are well educated. They are well connected with the needs of the community they have sworn to serve,” he said.
Also, retied Maj.-Gen. Victor Ezugwu, President, 37 Regular Course, said that that the occasion was to celebrate and appreciate the former COAS for serving and representing them well.
He noted that the course had produced the highest number of two star generals in the history of the armed forces of Nigeria from 1964 to date.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that Mrs Salamatu Faruk-Yahaya was also invested as the Queen Mother of the 37 Regular Course, while Mrs Appolonia Ezugwu was invested as the Matron. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)
Edited by Julius Toba-Jegede