The Armed Forces of Nigeria have collectively pledged 100 percent loyalty to the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
This is coming on the heels of the resurgence of military coups in five African countries so far, the last being the Niger Republic this month, July.
Speaking today, July 31, after being decorated by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, along with other newly-appointed Service Chiefs with their new ranks at the Presidential villa, Abuja, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Christopher Musa said: “I assure Mr. President that the Armed Forces of Nigeria is 100 per cent loyal to the government. We will go wherever we are ordered, whether by air, sea or land.
“Our appointment is a clear manifestation of the confidence reposed in us and recognition of our humble abilities to deliver for our dear nation. We pledge to carry out our duties with utmost dedication and full loyalty.
”We will ensure that Nigeria is projected in good light. May God bless Nigeria and guide the Armed Forces in our efforts to guard our nation’s territorial integrity, and ensure peace and security reigns supreme.”
General Musa, on behalf of other Service Chiefs.
expressed their unalloyed commitment to ensure the security and defence of the nation in their respective positions.
He also pledged to uphold with utmost dedication the safety and well-being of the nation and its citizens.
President Tinubu charged the new Service Chiefs to maintain teamwork to ensure peace and stability in the country.
He noted that the team work has so far the source of the gains recorded so far in the security sector.
He commended the dedication, commitment and steadfastness displayed by the Armed Forces, acknowledging their significant contributions to the nation’s peace and stability.
”We have seen that we are recording positive results in our security challenges because of your dedication, commitment and steadfastness,” President Tinubu stated.
He assured the new Service Chiefs that the government is committed to supporting them in their responsibilities.
The President underscored the value of virtues such as positive team thinking, unity, and selfless service to the nation, declaring that despite current economic challenges, a better future awaits Nigeria.
He urged all members of the Armed Forces to view themselves as one single family, regardless of their diversity.
He also offered prayers for God’s blessings upon the Nigerian Armed Forces, wishing them peace, progress, and success in their endeavours to protect the country’s territorial integrity.
President Tinubu emphasized the importance of honest service to the nation, which he said everyone in government including the service chiefs must embrace, adding that he is working very hard to solve the current economic challenges being faced by Nigerians.
”We are committed to serving you and not to rule over you.”
The event was attended by Vice President Kashim Shettima, Secretary to the Government of Federation, Senator George Akume, Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, National Security Adviser, Malam Nuhu Ribabu, senior government officials, members of the immediate families of the Service Chiefs, and other heads of security and intelligence agencies in the country.
Abridged Profiles of the inaugurated Service Chiefs:
Chief of Defence Staff
Born on December 25, 1967, General Musa joined the military in 1991 and belongs to the Infantry Corps.
He obtained a B.Sc Hons in Chemistry from the Nigerian Defence Academy and holds an Advanced Diploma in Security Management from the University of Lagos and an MSc (Military Science) from the International College of Defence Studies in China.
General Musa had attended various military courses and held several important positions, including Platoon Commander, Operations Officer for the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone, and Command Sector 3 of the Multinational Joint Task Force in the Lake Chad Region. He has received several awards and decorations for his meritorious service.
He is a member of the Nigerian Institute of Management and Nigerian Institute of Industrial Security. He married to Mrs. Lillian Oghogho Musa, and the marriage is blessed with children.
Chief of Army Staff
Lt-General Lagbaja was born on February 28, 1968. He was granted a Regular Combatant Commission as part of the 39 Regular Course on September 19, 1992, in the rank of Second Lieutenant. In the course of his career spanning over three decades, he has attended several courses and held instructional, staff, and command appointments creditably.
He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Geography from the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna, and a Masters in Strategic Studies awarded by the United States Army War College, Pennsylvania. Major General Lagbaja is an alumnus of the United States Army War College Class of 2014 and is qualified as an Airborne Jump Master.
He has served in various capacities, including as a Military Observer at the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Chief of Staff at Headquarters 8 Task Force Division in Monguno, and Commander of the 72 Special Forces Battalion in Makurdi. He has also commanded infantry brigades, namely the 9 and 2 Brigades in Lagos and Uyo, and served as General Officer Commanding for the 82 Division in Enugu and the 1 Division in Kaduna.
Prior to his appointment as the 23rd Chief of Army Staff, he was the Chief of Operations (Army), where he coordinated all local and foreign operational activities of the Nigerian Army.
Lt-General Lagbaja is married to Mrs. Maria Lagbaja, and they have children together.
Chief of Naval Staff
Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ikechukwu Ogalla was born on December 20, 1968. He enlisted in the Nigerian Defence Academy as part of the 39 Regular Combatant Course on September 16, 1987, and was commissioned into the Nigerian Navy as Sub-Lieutenant on September 19, 1992.
Vice Admiral Ogalla graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and received the Sword of Honour as the Best Graduating Naval Cadet, recognized for his academic excellence, military training, leadership qualities, and character.
He has attended various courses within and outside the country, including the Basic Hydrographic Course at the National Hydrographic School in Goa, India, and the Junior and Senior Staff Courses at Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji. He also completed the Higher Strategic Course at the National Defence College, Abuja, and holds a Master of Science in Strategic Studies from the University of Ibadan.
Vice Admiral Ogalla has held several significant appointments, such as Watch Keeping Duties on board NNS AGU, Instructor, Chief Instructor, and Commandant at the Nigerian Navy Hydrographic School. He also served as the Base Operations Officer at NNS PATHFINDER, where he played a vital role in combating oil theft and other economic crimes.
He is married to Mrs. Ijeoma Ogalla, and the union is blessed with children.
Chief of Air Staff
Born on September 11, 1970, Air Marshal Hasan Abubakar is the 22nd Chief of the Air Staff.
He joined the Nigerian Air Force as part of the 39 Regular Course of the Nigerian Defence Academy and became a commissioned Pilot Officer in September 1992. Throughout his flying career, he accumulated over 4,500 flying hours on various aircraft, including the Air Beetle, Dornier-228, C-130 Hercules, and Boeing 737.
Air Marshal Abubakar is a member of the elite Special Forces, having completed training in Basic and Advanced Airborne Courses, as well as the Amphibious Operations Course at the Nigerian Army Infantry Centre and Schools.
He holds a Master’s Degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy from Ahmadu Bello University Zaria and received strategic military training at the Nasser Higher Military Academy in Cairo, Egypt.
Air Marshal Abubakar has held various important positions, including Operations Officer at the Operational Conversion Unit, 88 Military Airlift Group in Ikeja, Commanding Officer of 21 Wing, Group Safety Officer, and Team leader at the United Nations Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUC).
He also served as the Commander of the 011 Presidential Air Fleet and as the Chief of Staff of Mobility Command in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.
He is happily married to Mrs. Rakiya Abubakar, and they have children together.