Interview

Buratai: We must use culture to promote national security, unity

 

 

 

 

 

 

Retired Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, former Chief of Army Staff and Nigerian Ambassador to Benin Republic, has advocated the use of culture and tradition to promote national security and national unity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buratai made the call on Saturday in Abuja at the Army Headquarters, Departments and Commands West African Social Activities (WASA), to mark the successful end of 2023 and usher in 2024 activities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He said that the Nigerian army was one of the first national institutions to be created by the colonial masters, adding that they recognised the richness and the cultural diversity of the soldiers that came from diverse tribes across the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This, according to him, informed their decision to institute army festival called WASA, as a celebration of the richness and cultural diversity of the people.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He said that there was hardly any institution in Nigeria where people’s cultures and traditions were well represented than in the Nigerian military which had given a special connection to the celebration of WASA by the Nigerian Army.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The reputation and celebration of our cultural diversity and its richness by the Nigerian military has allowed the institution to stand tall over the years and to succeed at promoting the unity and corporate existence of our dear countries.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“As we celebrate the Nigerian army’s achievement over the past one year in 2023, we are also not unmindful of the social, economic and security challenges in the country.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“As the Nigerian army strives to tackle insecurity in the country using both kinetic and non-kinetic measures, we must use culture and tradition to promote national security and national unity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“No Nigerian culture accepts banditry, kidnapping or terrorism.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“We must appeal to our youth to imbibe the culture of hard work, respect for elders and adherence to peaceful communal living.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Our cultural heritage of farming, fishing, art and craft must be encouraged in our societies in order for the unemployed to be useful to us so that they can shun criminal acts,” he said.

 

 

 

The former army chief said the Nigerian army had been a source of pride to the nation and had recorded well documented victories from participation in the 1st and 2nd World Wars.

 

“Our soldiers have also excelled in various peacekeeping operations across the globe.

 

“The involvement of the army in internal security operations has also recorded commendable success,” he said.

 

These achievements, according to him, represent a testimony to the dedication and sacrifices of the military personnel, some of whom had paid the supreme price in service to the nation.

 

“We owe to all of you a debt of gratitude for your sacrifices to the country.

 

“As members of the Armed Forces, you owe your loyalty to the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.

 

“President Bola Tinubu has been attentive and supportive to the demand for improved well-being of servicemen and their families, and we are deeply grateful to him for his support.

 

“Therefore, what is demanded of you is to continue to do your best to uphold your military tenets and I also implore you to continue to be alive to your constitutional responsibilities,” he added.

 

Buratai commended the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, for his professional leadership of the Nigerian army, saying that he had maintained a very high standard of discipline.

 

He has also maintained operational efficiency and administrative consistency in handling the welfare of the troops and their families, Buratai added.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He said the Nigerian army had played more roles in aid to civil authority at any time in the history of the nation with numerous achievements in its effort to keep the country safe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the WASA featured the maiden inter-agency tug of war competition which was won by the Nigeria army, with the Nigeria Police coming second and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), third.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The activities climaxed with the lighting of the camp fire by the former COAS and others that included the former Chief of Defence Staff, retired Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin.

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