15th January, 2022
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Saturday said the sacrifice made by the fallen heroes was supreme and marked the symbol of the nation’s unity.
He spoke after laying the wreath to mark this year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day at the Remembrance Arcade, Tafawa Balewa Square in Onikan, Lagos.
He charged members of the armed forces to continue to uphold the fine traditions bequeathed to the military by the departed soldiers.
The Governor said the State had not only honoured the efforts of the fallen heroes by participating in the yearly remembrance, but had also catered for the welfare of families of departed soldiers living in the State through various intervention programmes.
He said: “Today, we have come out in honour and in remembrance of fallen members of the Nigerian Armed Forces, who, at one time or the other, had been of great service to our nation and paid the supreme price to keep our unity and security. As a yearly tradition, the State Government comes together with military formations and veterans to commemorate this day in their honour and say that their sacrifices are not in vain.
“This is to continue to encourage the men of the Nigerian Armed Forces and to show them that the country will continue to remember them and ensure their efforts are not in vain. As a Government, we have been supporting our soldiers to keep the territorial integrity of this nation secure, while working with them in the areas of intelligence gathering to ensure Lagos remains safe for our citizens and visitors.”
As Lagos Government supports families of fallen soldiers through the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Sanwo-Olu said his administration had not left out military veterans residing in the State in Government’s welfare and intervention programmes packaged for ex-service personnel.
Few days ago, the Governor fulfilled a pledge of N50 million donation to the Lagos Command of the Nigerian Legion, in addition to employing over 5,000 military veterans as security guards across the State-own public schools, hospitals and Government facilities.
He said: “At the State level, we see our ex-servicemen and women as members of our community. We see them as people for whom we have responsibility. We promised we will equip their schools with unlimited Internet access and computers to support their children.
“All of these have shown that we have not abandoned our veterans. We will continue to help servicemen that have retired and create welfare support for the spouses and families of the ones that have departed, because we consider them as major stakeholders in our entire community.”
Other highlights of the event included Islamic and Christian prayers for the souls of the departed soldiers.
Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Olanrewaju Elegushi, said the event which is a tradition of the state government aimed to assist the Armed Forces, the fallen heroes and their families.
He said the state government had now increased its support to the families of the fallen armed forces, noting that they were also being supported through massive training and empowerment.
The Commissioner called on individuals and private entities to join the government in supporting the families of the fallen heroes, saying it was the business of everybody to show love and give assurance to the serving officers to show that they stood for them and for their families.
He said: “Mr Governor is leading this campaign and I urge us all to emulate what he is doing to show love to the families of the fallen heroes,” he said.
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Mr. Sewedo Oluseyi Whenu, said the occasion was to remember the fallen heroes who fought for national security by laying down their lives to ensure the safety of all.
“Though they died in service, they are still remembered, their widows and children are still alive and we have to ensure that they are taken care of,” he said.