177 pass out of NDA, get President’s Commission
Sunday, September 26, 2010
President Jonathan, represented by Vice President Namadi Sambo, said at the passing out parade of the 57th Regular Course of the NDA in Kaduna that already, the government is impressed with the transformation process in the Armed Forces as initiated by the three Services – Army, Navy and Air Force and under the supervision of the Chief of Defence Staff.
President Jonathan also reiterated his administration’s unwavering commitment to the pursuit of the rule of law, which he said, is a crucial pillar of a credible democratic government.
The President added that it is the constitutional responsibilities of members of the Nigerian Armed Forces to protect the nation’s territorial integrity and democratic values aimed at ensuring internal security and peaceful co-existence.
Expatiating, Jonathan said: “In whatever role you may find yourselves both within and outside our borders, I urge you to always adhere strictly to the rules of engagement for such operation based on universal best practices. Furthermore, you must continuously seek to acquire knowledge by taking advantage of the opportunities that abound in your subsequent trainings on latest developments in your various areas of specialization.”
The President who emphasized the importance of security to the survival of the nation said: “Security is of great significance to our national survival and cohesion. To realize this objective therefore requires a credible and effective defence component. You are therefore expected to beef up and rejuvenate the lower segment of the leadership of our Armed Forces. The Nigerian Armed Forces has a world acclaimed reputation for valour, resilience and loyalty to constituted authority.
“You will shortly be granted the highly coveted Presidential Commission, I therefore urge you to emulate the good examples of your seniors in practice. By this token, you are expected to shun any behaviour that will tarnish your reputation, honour and dignity as commissioned officers of the Federation.”
He also impressed on the young officers the need to remain diligent and committed to their calling, saying; “as for the combatant cadets passing out, today marks the beginning of a milestone in your career as officers in the Nigerian Armed Forces. You will recall that, some of those who started the course with you have fallen by the way side. This is because they could not withstand the rigours of the physical, mental and intellectual challenges which you gallantly scaled through. I congratulate you for your resilience. You are justified to be fulfilled on an occasion like this. Due to the very good quality of training you have been given, I am optimistic that you will fit easily into the activities of the various services to which you will be commissioned into.”
President Jonathan also lauded the efforts of the NDA to continue to reposition the institution, noting that “it is very delighting to note that the nation’s huge investment in this institution is highly justified.”
President Jonathan commended the efforts of the out-going NDA Commandant, Maj. Gen. Mahmood Abdullahi Abubakar, and the institution’s management for fully relocating the Academy to its permanent site, despite the challenges.
He urged the institution to remain steadfast and continue to produce well trained and highly disciplined officers that would keep the flag of the academy flying.
President Jonathan, also represented by Vice President Sambo said while commissioning the Olympic Size Swimming Pool of the NDA commended the Commandant for the project, saying “I congratulate you for this solution, which is out of your experience on the deficiency in the training facilities in the academy.”
In his remarks the Commandant of the NDA, Major General M. A. Yerima, said the Swimming Pool was constructed from savings and the support of the Chief of Defence Staff and the Service Chiefs to surmount the challenges faced by officers and soldiers in the course of their duties in the waters both within and outside the country. He said “I observed that the NDA is the only academy in the world that has no swimming pool consequently the training that we impact on our Cadets has been incomplete.” A demonstration swimming was performed by some Cadets and members of the Kaduna State Swimming Association Age Group, (within ages 8 to 20), popularly known as the “Yakowa Babes”.
A total of 177 Cadets, made up of 101 Army, 44 Navy and 32 Air Force passed out. The occasion featured a colourful parade and the presentation of awards. The Sword of Honour and the Chief of Naval Staff Gold Medal award went to Cadet Senior Under Officer (CSUO), S. Babangida, while the Indian Shield, the Chief of Army Staff Silver Medal and the Commandant’s Special Award went to Academy Senior Under Officer (ASUO), A. M. Alkali. The Chief of Army and Air Force Gold Medals went to CSUO, O. I Ayuba, and A. Atavu, respectively. Other award recipients were CSUO G. Y. Gwaza and M. A. Getso for the Chief of Navy and Air Force Silver Medals.
Also present at the occasion, were the Governor of Kaduna State, Mr. Patrick Yakowa, his Deputy, Alhaji Ramalan Yero, the Minister of State Defence, Murtala Shehu Yar’Adua, Minister of the FCT, Senator Bala Mohammed, Chairman Senate Committee on Defence, Senator Ibrahim Ida, the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal O. O. Petinrin, Service Chiefs, Lt. Gen O. A. Ihejirika, Vice Admiral O. S. Ibrahim and Air Marshal M. D. Umar, Emirs of Katsina and Zazzau, former and serving top military chiefs and several others.
SOURCE: nigeria defence