The 23 Armoured brigade Yola has today organized a special Sunday service in commemoration of Army Day Celebration (ADCEL).
Delivering his sermon, Major Rev. Fr. Martins Awoyinka, the chaplain of the brigade said the day which is celebrated annually on July 6 is important to the Army because of its historical epoch.
He said the day serves as a vehicle through which soldiers who fought world war I, world war II and civil war are remembered adding that the day is not only meant for remembering soldiers who died in the line of duty but also those who are currently in service.
He noted that the day was first celebrated in 1976 in remembrance of the day when the first bullet was shot in Cross River State which marks the beginning of Nigeria’s 30-month-old civil war.
Awoyinka noted that the day is celebrated not because the military was happy with the civil war or the lives lost, but significantly to remember fallen heroes who paid the supreme price to ensure Nigeria remained one indivisible entity.
He noted that the relevance of the Nigerian Army cannot be overemphasized because even democracy cannot survive without an active and collaborative military.
The chaplain urged for more prayers to serving personnel who are in different parts of Nigeria trying to contain the surfeit security challenges bedevilling the country.
He thanked God for the mercies on the Nigerian Army culminating in its successful operations in the past noting that Nigerians should be proud of the Army.
“Nigerian Army and God cannot be separated. We should be proud of it based on the victory it has recorded. The victory of Nigerian Army is not won by its might and gallantry but by God himself,” he said.
He noted that the Nigerian Army is a small Nigeria because of the representation of every section of the Nigerian community urging the personnel to maintain the tempo of oneness that the army is renowned for over the years.
Awoyinka thanked the brigade commander of the 23 brigade Brigadier Gen. A. M Garba for his excellent leadership saying he is one of the finest soldiers he has associated with in the Army.
He called on the brigade commander and unit commanders to maintain the excellent leadership they are dissipating for the benefit of the Army.
Speaking during the event, the brigade commander, Brigadier Gen. Aminu Mustapha Garba called on Nigerians to continue to accord the army the needed cooperation to succeed in all its operations.
Garba who was represented by Major Eberechukwu Vincent noted that military all over the world face peculiar challenges Nigeria inclusive adding that the only way Nigerian Army will give optimal performance is when it received the cooperation and support of Nigerians.
He eulogize the leadership qualities of the brigade commander noting that he is a leader that brought modern approach in solving existential challenges.
Vincent noted that he has worked with many commanders since his sojourn into the Army but could attests that Garba is one of the best amongst contemporaries and has succeeded in re-inventing the brigade through innovations and discipline.
He frowned at the attitude of some Nigerians who use the cyber space to denigrate the army urging them to desist from that in the spirit of national interest as the army is doing its best to contain the insecurity ravaging the country, adding that when the army fails it is Nigeria that fails.
Vincent noted that instead of the pull his down syndrome, Nigerians should celebrate the army because it is one institution who trained personnel with the rare courage to pay the supreme sacrifice for the security of all and sundry.