President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday charged the 128 Regular Combatant Officer Cadets who were commissioned into the three services of the Nigerian Armed Forces to be ready to pay the supreme sacrifice in defence of Nigeria.
President Buhari who was the Reviewing Officer at Passing Out Parade of the 63rd Regular Course Cadets at the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna, told the newly commissioned officers that much has been impacted in them and that it was time for them to pay back what the country and their parents have invested in them.
Among the newly commissioned officers are the first set of 19 female regular Combatant officers in the history of Nigeria.
The president who reminded the passing out cadets that, they were joining the military at a time the country needed them the most in view of the security challenges bedeviling the nation, further stressed that his administration inherited a badly managed insurgency in 2015, which the military under his watch has now degraded.
President Buhari further noted that, though terrorism and insurgency is a global phenomenon which needed multi-faceted approach to tackle, that the role of the military is paramount in combating it.
He also informed the officers of the latest security challenges posed by kidnappers, cattle rustlers and Niger Delta militants, and that the federal government was approaching the security threats in a number of ways, including use of military might.
President Buhari stressed that, the activities of the militants has badly affected the Nigerian economy and must be stopped. He charged the new military officers to remain apolitical in the discharge of their duties, as they join the military profession, saying, “You now belong to Nigeria, you are no longer indigenes of your respective states or villages, but officers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and you must behave as such. You must be ready to pay the ultimate sacrifice in the defence of Nigeria when the need arises.
“The journey into the military career that you are starting today is turbulent and challenging, but interesting. Application of your training here in the academy will certainly see you through the journey.
“Similarly, you must be of good character as you move out of this reputable academy. Your character will determine how far you will go in your career pursuit. Maintain discipline and loyalty to one Nigeria.
“We inherited a badly managed war against insurgency in the North-east, but now the capacity of the insurgents to launch attack has been curtailed, while towns once taken by the insurgents have been liberated. The ongoing mop up operation is to clear remnants of insurgents from their hideouts, all of these due to the gallant troops of the armed forces.
“Our challenges go beyond Boko Haram, but include kidnapping, cattle rustling and militancy in the Niger Delta which has impacted negatively on our economy,” President Buhari stressed.
Speaking about the academy, the president who was also the Reviewing Officer at 62nd Regular Course passing out parade in 2015, commended the NDA Commandant, Major General Mohammed T. Ibrahim for impressive face-lift of the academy.
The 128 new officers who were granted presidential commissioning into the three services of the Nigerian Armed Forces by President Muhammadu Buhari were on Thursday convocated, as graduates of the premier military university (NDA) in West Africa.