21 May 2013
By Godlove Bainkong
The 111 men in a majestic march past
held the Head of State and his guests
spellbound. Gentle and majestic! This is the description many onlookers gave a
contingent of Nigerian army, guest at
this year’s National Day, as the 111 men
marched past the Head of State and
other national and international dignitaries at the 20th May Boulevard
yesterday May 20.
They were unique in everything. They
came all the way with their band; they
marched slowly and gently in calculated
steps to the rhythm of their music. The
band trailed the troops as they
majestically took their royal steps but surely in solidarity with their
Cameroonian peers to make true the
theme of the 41st edition of the National Day, “The Army and the Nation, Working Together towards Meeting Security Challenges for an Emerging Cameroon.”
Their style of marching, unique in itself,
brought quietude at the ceremonial
ground as onlookers watched and dished out spontaneous applauses. The Head of State, Paul Biya and First Lady, Chantal Biya, flanked by senior State officials cheered the Nigerian men as they exhibited what many chose to qualify as a queen’s march.
Among the high-level quests at the presidential tribune was General SY Audu who led the Nigerian delegation. Before and after the Nigerians marched
past, no other contingent or group
performed like them.
Cameroonian defence forces, all contingents inclusive, were explosive in their performance, marching with force and exhibiting their strength in securing the country, its people and goods and in so doing surmounting security huddles so as to accelerate the country’s socio-economic development.
But in all calmness, the Nigerian contingent, special in every move, demonstrated that all (calmness and force) can combine to give a nation
peace, stability and sustainable
development. A performance which the
Nigerian High Commissioner to Cameroon, Hadiza Mustapha, described as a sign of good times, peaceful and
cordial relationships with much to come.
“Now, with the peace that we have
gained, we are hoping to also expand on
the economic relationship to help our
people get more jobs and assist our national development,” she said.