The President of the Nigerian Senate, Ahmed Lawan, says the legislature will continue to support the nation’s Armed Forces to overcome security challenges across the country.
Lawan made the pledge during the launch of the emblem for the 2023 Armed Forces and Remembrance Day by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
He further pledged that the legislature will also give its financial assistance to the families of fallen heroes and veterans.
“First of all, this entire event is for Mr. President to launch the appeal fund for the remembrance for the veterans of this country and of course, you will recall that the President donated a sum of N10 million for this.
“We in the legislature normally do our own contribution, but I always like to do that from the headquarters of the National Assembly, that’s the National Assembly complex, because we are a separate arm of government and I feel that this is not the right place to say what we will do to support our veterans.
“I commended the President for providing much funds for our Armed Forces to secure Nigeria. Of course, we have been experiencing a lot of insecurity, but you must credit this government with the fact that when it came in in 2015, the Northeast, particularly Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa, were under the occupation and I use the word occupation deliberately and purposefully, under the occupation of the insurgents, bokoharam.
“Many of our local governments were under the control of boko haram, but Mr. President, decidedly, approached the matter and by two years we could say that boko haram was technically defeated and today, it’s not technically defeated, but practically defeated. Our states are free, have been liberated. Of course, we experience other security issues in the Northwest, in the Northcentral and to some extent in the Southeast, different security challenges,” he said.
Lawan emphasized that the Armed Forces have been able to achieve a lot because no administration has given them the kind of support they have enjoyed under President MuhammaduBuhari.
“But aren’t we doing something as an administration, we are doing so much and our Armed Forces are sacrificing everything with the little that we’re giving them. But this is the administration that has spent so many resources on the Armed Forces to ensure we secure the country.
“Mr President promised several times that before he leaves in May 2023, he would ensure that he leaves behind a more and better secured Nigeria and the best and only most logical thing to do, for us in the National Assembly, is to also participate in that enterprise of ensuring that we provide resources for the armed forces and other security agencies to continue to fight the insecurity that we face and it’s something that is doable.
“It’s a matter of determination and I’m taking this opportunity here to appeal to all Nigerians, that we must at all times, support our Armed Forces, at all times identify with what they are doing.
“These are people who give their lives. Some of them lose their lives, some are maimed, lose their limbs, and therefore they deserve, not only empathy but the kind of support that will give them the sense that the citizens are behind them and I believe that that’s going to go a long way in making them feel that we are in this thing together,” he added.
The Armed Forces and Remembrance Day is celebrated annually on 15th January because it marks the end of the Nigerian Civil War.
It is a day set aside to celebrate personnel of the Army, Air Force, Navy and Police who have died in the line of duty.
The event is also used to honour veterans still alive and as a medium for soliciting financial, moral and material support for the families of the fallen heroes.