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Eid-el-Kabir: IGP, COAS celebrate with policemen, troops in Northeast

Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr Usman Alkali-Baba, on Tuesday hosted a special feast with officers and men of the Command in Borno, to mark the Eid-el-Kabir celebration.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the maiden IGP feast is designed to enable the police hierarchy celebrate the festive season with personnel of the Command in the frontline.

The Spokesman of the Borno Police Command, SP Edet Okon, stated this in a statement on Tuesday in Maiduguri.

Okon said the IGP was at the Command to eat and dine with the men in the spirit of sallah celebration, to boost their morale and show them that the high command of the force and Federal Government have them in mind.

He said the IGP commended the officers and men including Special Forces deployed to the state for their resilience, gallantry and dedication to duty.

Okon said that the IGP also promised to make the welfare of personnel a priority.

This, he said, was evident in the efforts of the IGP which resulted in the settlement of outstanding arrears and allowances to personnel on special duty in the state.

According to him, the IGP is showing greater commitment to restore the primacy of the Nigeria Police Force in the security architecture of the country.

The statement also quoted the out-going Commissioner of Police, Mr Bello Makwashi, as reiterating the commitment of the Command to fight crimes in the state.

Makwashi called for more logistic support to the Command to enhance its operations.

Meanwhile, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Farouk Yahaya, hosted similar feast with troops deployed to Borno and Yobe States.

Yahaya, represented by Brig.-Gen. Adamu Nura, Commander, Sector 2, Operation Hadin Kai, felicitated officers, soldiers, their families and civilian staff of the Nigerian Army on the occasion of the Ed-el-Kabir celebration.

“I wish to first of all, express my sincere gratitude to the Almighty God for His mercies, protection and guidance over us while discharging our obligations to Nigeria.

“The Eid-el-Kabir festival brings a special reminder for us as it highlights the virtues of loyalty, obedience and sacrifice which are also the hallmark of professional soldiering,” he said.

He said the Eid festival had provided a unique opportunity to reflect and redouble efforts towards fulfilling constitutional roles of defeating adversaries and defending the territorial integrity of Nigeria.

The COAS said the Nigerian Army had lived up to expectations and would continue to remained focuss in tackling security challenges in the country.

“I, therefore, wish to specifically recognise and appreciate the immense sacrifices of our troops in Operations Hadin Kai; Hadarin Daji, Thunder Strike, Whirl Stroke and other operations.

“Let me use this opportunity to once again pay special tributes to our colleagues who have paid the supreme price in the defence of our fatherland. May their gentle souls rest in peace, ameen,” he said.

Yahaya reiterated his commitment to promote officers based on merit, to encourage gallantry, celebrate excellence and honour heroes.

The Army, in that spirit conferred the COAS Commendation Award to some deserving officers and soldiers on Tuesday July 6, during the NADCEL 2021.

“I shall continue to appreciate and applaud competence, diligence and dedicated service.

“As I will reward excellence and achievements, I will not hesitate to punish indiscipline, indolence, negligence and all untoward acts.

“In line with my vision to have a Professional Nigerian Army ready to accomplish assigned mission within a Joint Environment in Defence of Nigeria.”

According to him, the Army authorities will continue to accord premium to the welfare of officers, soldiers and their families.

Yahaya said that hospital facilities and medical services were being improved to ensure quality healthcare service delivery to personnel and members of their families within and outside the country.

He said those wounded in action would be adequately treated and their requirements such as wheelchairs, prothesis and other special vocational training would be provided.

“To our colleagues who have paid the supreme price, we shall continue to do our best to ensure the comfort of their families, through prompt payment of all their entitlements, including medical bills and school sponsorship of their children,” he said.

According to him, the overall aim is to develop the individual soldier, provide him with relevant skills, competences and good leadership by his NCOs and SNCOs who he will aspire to emulate.

While commending officers and soldiers for their gallantry, Yahaya pledged to collaborate with other security agencies and stakeholders to fight crimes in the country.

He further commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his support and strategic guidance to the Nigerian Army.

“I want to once again pledge the unalloyed loyalty of the officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army to the President, Commander-On-Chief of the Armed Forces and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that normal vehicular movement had resumed in Maiduguri, following the restriction imposed by the Police to guarantee safety during the Eid prayer period.

The police had earlier announced rsstriction of vehicular movement in Maiduguri and its environs between 6:00 am and 12:00 pm, as part of security measures to ensure hitch free Eid celebration.

NAN also reports that Gov. Babagana Zulum, IGP, Usman Alkaki-Baba, Senators Kashim Shettima and Ali Ndume joined the Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Umar-Garbai, and observed the Eid prayer at the Ramat Square prayer ground under tight security.

In his sermon, the Chief Imam of Maiduguri, Shettima Ibn Saleh, urged Muslim faithful to pray for peace and stability in the country.

In Bauchi State, Muslim faithful had observed the Eid celebrations in peaceful atmosphere, as Islamic clerics urged wealthy individuals to support the needy.

Malam Abdulazeez Ibrahim, the Chief Imam of Gwallaga Mosque in Bauchi metropolis, urged wealthy individuals to assist the less privileged with what to eat, to enable them to celebrate the Eid in a happy mood..

“By assisting them with food, drinks and other necessities of life, it will make them happy and sustain their life.

“I advise Muslims to imbibe the spirit of sacrifice and good behavior as exemplified by Prophet Mohammed in their daily lives,’’ he said.

At the Shadawanka Barrack Eid ground, Imam Hashimu Mohammmed also stressed the need for helping one another to sustain the livelihood of the deserving households.

He admonished the Muslim faithful to support and uplift one another so that the joy of the Eid-el-Kabir is spread among all.

Mohammmed also urged Muslims to use the opportunity of the celebration to rededicate themselves to live up to the ideals of honesty, selflessness and tolerance.

Also, Alhaji Bala Babainna, the Chief Imam, Bauchi Central Mosque, enjoined Muslim to promote religious tolerance to ensure unity and development in the country.

He cautioned Muslims on the need to show love to fellow human, saying that with the current hardship in the society, we have to overcome it by love.

“If we practice in our lives what God really says about being our neighbours’ keepers, our fortunes as a people will change for the better.

“Eid-el-Kabir is not about slaughtering ram alone but should be aimed at showing love and tolerance among ourselves as well as seeking Allah’s intervention on the challenges facing the country,’’ Babainna said.

The chief imam decried acts of terrorism in the country, calling for prayers from all and sundry for divine intervention.

NAN also reports that the Eid celebrations were generally peaceful across the state.

Speaking on the celebration, Mr Garkuwa Adamu, the Spokesman of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), said the celebration was peaceful across the state.

He said that reports received from divisional offices and some units of the Corps, indicated that the Eid prayers were observed in various locations peacefully.

“That shows and explains that there is peace across the state,” he said.

In his comment, SP Ahmed Wakil, the Police Public Relation Officer (PPRO) in Bauchi, added that the Sallah celebration was peaceful in the state.

“Reports reaching us from divisions confirmed that the state is calm and quiet. There is nothing contrary to the peaceful conduct of the Sallah celebration across the state,” he said.

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