Today is a significant day in the Armed Forces of Nigeria, as it presents another opportunity to honor the memory of fallen heroes and celebrate the momentous contributions of veterans and personnel still serving in near and distant locations.
The wreaths we lay, the 21 guns salute, speeches and moments of silence do not quite compensate for the sacrifices of our heroes, yet we must continue to conduct this solemn ritual, because as the adage goes; “To live in the hearts of people who love us is to live forever “.
With this mind, we therefore remember our fallen colleagues, as they gave their lives defending the honour of our nation. Their valor and bravery is remembered with each passing day. They shall never be forgotten. For our colleagues wounded in action, we are with them through their ordeal as they recover to serve another day.
We have sworn an oath to defend our nation and protect our people, so we must uphold this duty to the point of making the ultimate sacrifice as many of our colleagues that we remember today have done. It is indeed a worthy cause and as Martin Luther King noted:
“If a Man hasn’t discovered something that he will die for, he isn’t fit to live”
We pray therefore that God forgives the sins of our departed colleagues and grants their souls eternal rest. For our wounded in action soldiers, we pray for their full recuperation.
For us soldiers alive today, we owe our fallen and wounded colleagues a responsibility to ensure that we remain faithful to our mission of safeguarding our nation and its people. In this regard, we will continue to work with our colleagues from Benin, Cameroon, Chad and Niger as well as our strategic partners within the framework of the Multinational Joint Task Force to bring peace and stability to our respective countries and the Lake Chad Basin in general.
As soldiers, Today is a day for reflection and a solemn opportunity for rededication and reinvigoration towards keeping the flame burning. We must not waiver from our mission and we must remain resolute towards achieving success.
Please accept my best wishes on behalf of the Multinational Joint Task Force.
Major General IM Yusuf