Photo- Chief of Army Staff, Maj.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja
The Nigerian Army is set to celebrate 160 years of existence in the country and will showcase its capabilities in operations, research, and development to commemorate the event.
The Chief of Army Staff, CoAS, Maj.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, made this known while briefing newsmen as part of the activities marking NADCEL-2023 on Tuesday in Abuja.
Lagbaja, who was represented by the Chief of Special Services and Programmes (Army), Maj.-Gen. Emeka Onumajuru, said the Nigerian Army has evolved in all ramifications in the last 160 years of its existence.
He said the Nigerian Army, as an enviable national institution saddled with the constitutional mandate of defending Nigeria’s territorial integrity, has a rich history of service dating back to 1863.
Lagbaja said the 2023 NADCEL, slated to hold in Ibadan on July 6, was to commemorate the day the Nigerian Civil War broke out.
According to him, it also marks the day the very first shot of the war was fired at Garkem in the present-day Cross River State.
He said the date was set aside to remind them about the past and the need to address problems peacefully rather than resorting to arms.
He said, “It offers the Nigerian Army an opportunity to take stock, assess its performances, interface with the public, and set goals for continued professional growth.
“This will enable it to better perform its constitutional roles and also compete favourably with other armies around the globe.
“This year’s celebration is to celebrate the Nigerian army’s achievements.
“It will also showcase the army’s operational activities as well as its transformational strides in innovation, research and development, civil-military relations, and technological advancement.
“The celebration is also aimed at projecting the Army as an instrument of national unity and development as well as highlighting its capabilities,” he said.