The Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole yesterday took a swipe at politicians who make unguarded statements that could undermine the unity and integrity of the country, just as he commended officers and men of the Nigerian Armed Forces for fostering the bonds of unity.
The governor, who made the remarks during the launch of the emblem appeal fund to mark the 2013 Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration in Benin, said the men in uniform should be appreciated for their contributions to the indivisibility of the nation. “The Armed Forces are doing their best to keep Nigeria one while politicians and even elders who should play up what will unite us are talking of things that could destroy the bridge of unity. But the men in uniform have continued to defend the indivisibility of Nigeria,” he noted.
According to him, “if Nigeria has remained one united country it is because men in uniform stood on the side of the Nigeria nation. We must continue to appreciate the Armed Forces in the effort to keep Nigeria one.” Oshiomhole said, looking at the security challenges in the country, the Armed Forces had a role to keep the nation secured. “Our gratitude goes to the Nigeria Army and to Major General Abel Umahi, the commander of the 4 Brigade.
Without your support the kidnappers would have overrun us in Edo State. You have policed the streets. Our gratitude also goes to the Air Force for monitoring the creeks with the aircraft and providing intelligence information as well as the supply and transport,” he said. The governor said the average Nigerian appreciate the contribution of officers and men who sacrificed and paid the supreme price in the struggle to defend the sovereignty of the nation, adding that “we should go beyond lip service in showing how much we appreciate them.”
He maintained that it should be the responsibility of the government, both at the local, state and federal levels to create opportunities for the ex-service men who were still strong to render service. While assuring that Edo State Government would continue to extend more employment opportunities to the ex-service men, the governor disclosed that, “we have already extended to the legionaries the opportunity to put an eye on the schools we are building and they are doing well.
“This year, the state government will double the contribution which was given last year by 100 per cent to the launching of the emblem appeal fund across the 18 local government areas.” N250, 000 will be provided to the state chapters for the celebration of the remembrance day celebration,” the governor disclosed.
The Chairman, Nigeria Legion, Edo State, Col. Osawaru Johnbull Awanbor, thanked Governor Oshiomhole for creating jobs for their members, noting that this year’s launching of the emblem appeal week which was to honour the supreme sacrifices made by gallant heroes would be observed as a thanksgiving for the victory of the governor at the Supreme Court.
Other activities to celebrate the remembrance day celebration was a parade at the museum premises and the laying of wreaths at the unknown soldier cenotaph.