14 January 2013

Nigeria: Ashiru Drums Support for Nigerian Legion

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amb. Olugbenga Ashiru, on Monday called for more support for members of the Nigerian Legion in appreciation of their contribution to the peace and security of the nation.

Ashiru made the call at the launching of the Armed Forces Remembrance Day Emblem by the ministry in Abuja.

He said it was important to remember those officers and men who paid the supreme sacrifice in the defence of the territorial integrity of the country and also in peace keeping operations, not just in Africa but globally.

The minister also solicited support for their widows and families.

Ashiru, who lauded the existing partnership between the ministry and that of the defence, said both institutions played positive roles in peace keeping worldwide.

"It is gratifying to note that wherever our armed forces are and our flag is being flown, in the area of peace keeping or quelling insurgence, they always excel and distinguish themselves very well," he stressed.

Earlier, the Director, Veteran Affairs Department in the Ministry of Defence, Brig.-Gen. Salihu Uba, said the ministry owed the nation the duty to interface with its foreign counterpart, to maintain global peace and security.

Uba, who spoke on the significance of the week, added that it was a period for sober reflections on activities of the armed forces, late heroes, veterans and their widows.

Similarly, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry of foreign Affairs, Amb. Uhomoibhi, spoke about the relationship between the institutions.

"The armed forces have done well for our nation and the world in ensuring the stability of peace and development," Uhomoibhi said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that highlight of the launch was the decoration of Ashiru, Uhomoibhi and other senior officials of the ministry with the puppy emblem.

The armed forces day, also known as Remembrance Day, is celebrated on Jan. 15 annually.

It was formally marked on Nov. 11 of every year to coincide with the remembrance day for the World War 11 veterans in the British Commonwealth of Nations.

However, it was changed to Jan. 15 in commemoration of the surrender of Biafran troops to the federal troops in 1970, thus signaling the end of the Nigerian civil war. (NAN)

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