Armed Force Remembrance day in Nigeria is the day that Nigeria fallen Heroes in the military are remembered for their efforts in securing the Nation and for the lives that were lost in doing that.
It was initially celebrated on 11 November of every year so that it will coincide with the Poppy Day which is the day to remember the world war II veterans in the British Commonwealth of Nations but it was changed to the 15th day of January every year which is the commemoration of the surrender of the Biafran troop to the Federal troops in January 15th, 1970.
That surrender marked the end of the Nigerian civil war that lasted for three years and sought to tire the nation apart.
Nigerian Military of recent have been involved in the fight against insurgency in the North East, the herdsmen killing in the Middle Belt and militancy in the South-South, in which some of them have lost their lives to the cause. Also, some were lost through assassination, just like the assassination of Gen Alex Badeh in 2018 as he was returning from the farm. Some other military officials were also ambushed by Boko Haram insurgents and many lives were lost in the process.
Families of the lost soldiers have been in tears and will use today to remember their lost ones irrespective of how they died, whether killed in action or missing in action.
They have been increased clamor that the Federal Government to look into the fact that the effort of these and blood of these soldiers was not lost in vain and that they should truly ensure the welfare of men of the Nigerian army whether air, land of Naval. This clamor is also in line with a sentence in the Nigerian National Anthem which is “the labor of our heroes past, shall never be in vain”.
Vice President Yemi Osibanjo in commending the man and women of the Nigerian Military at an interdenominational Church service in Abuja to mark the 2019 armed forces remembrance day said
“We are grateful that they were faithful to the cause, they did not betray the trust of millions, they gave up all the comfort of life and the love and affection of family that we may enjoy the same.
” Our posthumous thanks go to them and their families who not only bear the fearful apprehension of their going to war, but also the heartbreak of their death.
“Our gratitude must also mean a commitment to ensuring that their families are cared for, that their children do not ask why the sacrifice at all,”
he also added that
” Nigerians will forever be grateful to the fallen heroes, veterans and members of the armed forces for availing themselves to defend the territorial integrity of the country.
“There is always a price for peace, which the military have paid, while other citizens enjoy it,”
On 31st October 2019, President Mohammadu Buhari inaugurated the 2019 armed forces remembrance day emblem at the council chamber in the Presidential villa.
He was accompanied to the event by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Yakubu Dogara the Speaker of the Federal house of representative, members of the Federal Executive Council and the Chairman of the Nigerian Legion Brig. Gen. Adakole Akpa (retd), veterans and others.
Today also in India, they are celebrating their Army Day. Which is a kind of the equivalent of Armed Forces Remembrance Day. To them, it is the day in which they recognize Field Marshal Kodandera M. Cariappa’s for taking over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher who was the last British Commander-in-Chief of India, on 15 January 1949.
We wish the Nigerian Armed Forces a happy celebration.