By Emmanuel Obisue
Nigeria’s Minister of Defence, Mohammed Abubarkar has hailed retired and retiring officers of the Nigerian Army for their sacrifices and unwavering commitment to the nation’s stability, and has assured prompt payment of their pension.
The Defence Minister gave the assurance on Tuesday during a Regimental Dinner Night organized in honour of newly retired and retiring Nigerian Army senior officers at the Armed Forces Officers’ Mess Asokoro, Abuja, where one General, one Lieutenant General, 67 Major Generals and 44 Brigadier Generals (113) bowed out of the Nigerian Army.
A statement issued on Wednesday by Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, Director of Army Public Relations, informed that the minister urged the retirees to take a break and reflect appropriately on the next phase of life.
He assured them of the Federal Government’s commitment to prompt payment of pensions of retired personnel. The minister saluted the retirees and expressed the nation’s gratitude for their exemplary service, love for country and commended their spouses for their perseverance.
He charged members of the Armed Forces to remain loyal and sustain the culture of supporting democracy in Nigeria and across the shores, adding that the disposition of the Armed Forces towards democracy had made it a shining example in West Africa and an influencer in the comity of nations.
The minister noted that the occasion provided Nigerian Army the opportunity to reflect on its service and profound dedication as demonstrated by the retired and retiring senior officers, adding that experiences and skills garnered while in service and respect for diversity, which has been their working principles throughout their career will provide them a veritable platform as they exit the service.
He noted that the Federal Government will continue to do all within its reach to improve the well- being of serving and retired personnel.
Also speaking at the occasion, Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja enjoined the retired senior officers to appreciate God and the Nigerian Army for a successful sojourn in the ‘noble profession of arms’ and attaining the point of meritorious disengagement from active service.
Lagbaja congratulated and appreciated the wives and families of the retired senior officers for their patience and support, while holding the home front.
Gen Lagbaja further expressed gratitude to President Bola Tinubu, the National Assembly and Defence Minister for their untiring support to the Nigerian Army.