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Olonisakin attributes Nigeria’s continued unity to armed forces’ roles

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Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin

Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Gabriel Abayomi Olonisakin, has attributed Nigeria’s continued unity to the roles played by the Nigerian Armed Forces.

Olonisakin also urged the ex-servicemen to unite under a single umbrella, noting that the proliferation of associations of military veterans was hampering their efforts at getting attention of authorities in addressing their needs.

The CDS, who spoke in Abuja yesterday during the opening of a three-day workshop on the unification of veterans’ associations, said: “In Nigeria, the armed forces have been the bastion of unity from various divisive tendencies that constantly threaten the unity of the country.

“As an institution, the armed forces do not only concern themselves with maintaining the territorial integrity of the nation, they also contribute to the maintenance of international peace and security, and perform other functions in support of civil authority.

“This, therefore, means that given the opportunity, the armed forces can also contribute qualified human capital in several areas of human endeavours in addition to their military capabilities.”

Olonisakin, while commending retired armed forces personnel for forming various groups with a view to addressing their problems, noted that the development had not allowed for focused efforts for the benefits of retirees across service, ranks and place of abode.

According to him, the workshop “becomes necessary to enable us discuss areas of differences and fashion out ways of concentrating our efforts and uniting into a very formidable and respectable veteran organisation.

However, in his welcome address, Director of Veteran Affairs Division, Defence Headquarters, Maj.-Gen. Edmund Obi, said there was no doubt that those who opted for military service chose to make the greatest sacrifice of self for the peace, security and development of the country.

“Their sense of patriotism is never in doubt and does not end with the termination of active service,” he said.


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