BY: VITALIS UGOH, Calabar
The weeklong of activities marking the 2021 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration in Bakassi Local Government Area was today rounded off at Ikot Effiom with the laying of wreaths at the tomb of the unknown soldier.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Chairman of Bakassi Local Government Area Hon Chief Iyadim Amboni Iyadim, commended the Nigeria Legion In the area for its efforts in maintaining comradeship of the service men and women after retirement.
Iyadim said it is worthwhile to honor the memory of the distinguished veterans who paid the supreme sacrifice to keep the country united.
According to him,” the resolve by our country men and women to remain one indivisible nation, is at the centre of this celebration”, adding that ,” indeed, the Armed Forces Remembrance Day is marked in the country on January 15 instead of November 11 as in other nations all over the world to commemorate the end of the Nigerian Civil War’.
” We must therefore cast our minds back to the events that led to the civil war , the immense human loss of the tragic war, and resolve that never again shall we allow our dear nation by our action or inaction to experience another war.
He saluted the gallantry , courage and sacrifice of men and women of the armed forces as they grapple with diverse and contemporary security challenges plaguing the country.
On the October 24, 2020 EndSARS destruction in the area, the Chairman regretted the wanton looting of property and total devastation of the local government council secretariat and other establishments within the area, emphasising that,” never again should we allow such devastation to be experienced in our local government and the country as a whole”.
Iyadim added that, ‘ it is in the light of this, that the present administration in Bakassi pledges its commitment to the protection of lives and property of all indigenes and residents in the area, and at the same time appeal to the state government to quickly intervene in the rebuilding of the local government council secretariat”.
He thanked the state Governmenor, Prof Ben Ayade,who is the Patron of the Legion In Cross River for his support to the Legion and called on well meaning Nigerians and philanthropists to assist the veterans cause in any way they can.
The Chairman Nigeria Legion, Bakassi Local Government Area, Comrade Ekuke Daniel Odionka , said the celebration was to commemorate war veterans for their invaluable contributions in keeping the country as one united nation as well as to draw attention of Nigerians towards the need to reflect on the numerous contributions of the fallen heroes who paid the supreme sacrifice to preserve national unity
Odionka noted that it was also a call on good spirited Nigerians and corporate organizations to offer appropriate assistance to war heroes to enable them live a meaningful life after retirement with their families
He commended members of the Legion for their steadfast and exemplary conduct which they have continued to demonstrate in their various services to the nation even in their retirement while urging Bakassi Local Government Council to continue to show commitment within available resources to address their challenges.
Those who laid wreaths at the grave of the unknown soldier included the Chairman of Bakassi Local Government Area Hon Chief Iyadim Amboni Iyadim, Leader of the Council, Hon Pastor Emmanuel Michael Effiong, Chairman Nigeria Legion , Comrade Ekuke Daniel Odionka, Officer Commanding Operation Delta Safe 410,Ikang Base Lt Akali, and the Divisional Police Officer DPO Superintendent of Police ,Mr Victor Edet while a one minute silence was observed in honor of the departed fallen heroes.