Tinubu lauds military veterans for their sacrifices 

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By Collins Yakubu-Hammer

President Bola Tinubu has commended members of Retired Army, Navy and Air Force Officers Association (RANAO) for their sacrifices and parts they played in defending the territorial integrity of the country.

Tinubu gave the commendation at the 36th National Annual General Meeting of RANAO on Thursday in Abuja.

The meeting with the theme: “In Pursuit of the Aspirations of the Founding Fathers” was organised by the Association.

The President, represented by the Minister of Defence, Alhaji Mohammed Badaru, said members of RANAO and the veteran community answered the national call during the darkest period of the nation’s history.

“I want to express, not only my administration’s appreciation, but indeed, the entire nation’s gratitude for the huge sacrifices the men and women of our Armed Forces, both serving and retired, have made and, are making to keep the country safe from the enemies both within and outside.

“I am aware that having retired, the President and his members in RANAO are no longer on active duty.

“However, I am equally aware that, as the saying goes, once a soldier, always a soldier.

“For you members of the RANAO, it is on record that while in service, you toiled, sweated, and scarified as much as your younger and active-duty colleagues are doing currently.

“Glancing through your matured faces seated before me, it is obvious that a good number of you were active participants in the Civil War that happened more than 50 years ago,” Tinubu said.

The President tasked RANAO to provide leadership for the rest of the veterans community, adding that, members of RANAO had exhibited more measured approach in the pursuit of issues affecting them.

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Earlier, the National President of RANAO, Retired Maj.-Gen. Abdulhafeez Adewuyi, said the association, planted as a seed about 37 years ago in Oyo State had experienced remarkable achievements.

According to Adewuyi, the meeting is also a forum where members take stock and map out strategies within the association

“As a leading element of the veteran association in Nigeria, the National Annual General Meeting provides the association the opportunity to share experience and oneness among members.

“It also gives opportunity to engage in healthy discussions on the various facets of national discuss with the view to structure contributions of veterans towards national development,” he said

Adewuyi noted that the association was aware that Tinubu’s administration inherited a colossal governance burden, characterised by a fractured polity.

According to him, the evidence could be seen in the cleavages of ethnocentrism, sectionalism and religious extremism.

“We identify with you in your conscious efforts to navigate the ship of Nigeria out of the tortuous sea of poverty and economy depression,” Adewuyi said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that high points of the event was the investitures of a former Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Lucky Irabor (rtd) and Former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika (rtd.)

Some other personalities were also given awards for their contributions to the progress of the association. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)


Edited by Ifeyinwa Okonkwo/Rotimi Ijikanmi

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