By Daniels Nwokike
The Nigerian Army (NA) which has the second largest troops in the continent has come a very long way since its inception in 1863 and has always set out activities yearly to celebrate it’s long and dedicated service not just to Nigeria but to the entire continent of Africa and the world at large.
This year is not an exception as the NA has lined up a week-long series of activities to mark the 2017 Nigerian Army Day Celebration (NADCEL) which will culminate on the 6th of July 2017.
The 6th of July being a remarkable day in the history of the Nigerian Army and the entire country at large, was the day that the first shot was fired in Gakem in the present day Cross River State that threw the country into a 30 month long civil war as far back as 1967.
The chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt Gen. Yusuf Buratai while briefing newsmen in Abuja, said that the celebration provides the Nigerian Army with the opportunity to take stock, assess its performances, interface with the general public and also set goals for the succeeding year.
Buratai who was represented by the Chief of Policy and Plans (Army), Maj Gen Christopher Jemitola, stated that the NADCEL reminds the entire country of the supreme sacrifice paid by all and also to showcase the resolve of the Nigerian Army in keeping Nigeria together as a United and an indivisible entity.
“The celebration is also aimed at projecting the Nigerian Army as an Institution of National Unity, Integration and development as well as highlighting the achievements, capabilities of the Nigerian Army”, he remarked.
The activities for the NADCEL are arranged thus: A press briefing on Friday followed by a jumaat prayer at Mogadishu barracks, Sanitation and medical outreach on Saturday at Utako and Kubwa, Interdenominational service at all saints church Mogadishu barracks, Photo and Art gallery exhibition on Monday at Nigerian Army Resource centre, and a Seminar and COAS commendation awards at the same venue on Thursday.
The 2017 NADCEL is themed “Sustaining the successes of the Nigerian Army in tackling and containing emerging security challenges”.