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By Kobe Eru Godwin
A day like this comes with moments of silence to all the fallen soldiers who died in the line of duty serving this glorious nation in pride and honour, to protect and defend. The Armed Forces Remembrance Day is marked on the 15th of January annually in Nigeria. The event which was initially marked on the 11th of November (popularly known as 11-11) so that it corresponded with the World War II Veterans’ Remembrance Day in the British Commonwealth of Nations, had to be changed to January 15th, annually. This was done in memorial of the surrender of Biafran troops to the Federal troops which took place on the 15th of January 1970 and brought an end to the civil war. Several events including release of pigeons to symbolize peace, placing of wreaths, playing of the last post, Remembrance Day parade and so on characterize this memorable day. This year, the theme for the occasion is “Peace and Unity”. With the sacrifices these fallen heroes made, the best we as a nation can do is continue to foster peace and unity in every way possible. The Nigerian Army is still in many ways keeping up the good work started by our heroes past. All 36 states including the FCT pay tribute in their own little way. Notable among them is Sokoto State which has launched the event with a token of 7 million naira. Armed Forces Remembrance Day emblems have also been on sale across the country for some time now, the returns of which go to the Nigerian Legion (an association of ex-service men covering the Nigerian Army, Navy and Air force) alongside the other donations. Men and women of the Nigerian Armed Forces have been in various wars and peace keeping missions both nationally and internationally. Tanzania, Liberia, Darfur, Sierra Leone and The Congo are only but a few of the countries who have immensely benefited from their services. They (the Nigerian Armed Forces) have also been of immense support to ECOWAS’ peacekeeping efforts through the then ECOMOG, and now in Guinea Bissau and the proposed peace mission in Mali. As these loyal soldiers of the Nigerian Army deploy to Mali, we reminisce on the lives of those lost. Their memory will be etched on the pages of our national history. May their souls live on! Happy Armed Forces Remembrance Day.    

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This article was first published on 15th January 2013 and updated on January 19th, 2013 at 10:45 pm

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One thought on “Armed Forces Remembrance Day”

  • God Bless Nigeria.

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