By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
The Nigerian Army, on Saturday commissioned 373 cadets of its Direct Short Service Course (DSSC) 25/2020, into officers cadre at the Nigerian Army (NA), School of Infantry (NASI) in Jaji, Kaduna State.
The officers, who comprised of serving and non-serving personnel, graduated in different fields after six months of intensive training at the school.
The new officers were conferred with the rank of Lieutenant into the Nigerian Army by the Minister of Defence, Maj.-Gen. Bashir Magashi, represented by the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin.
Addressing the new officers, Magashi said that the DSSC was designed for the employment of professionals from various fields into specialist corps and directorates of the Nigerian Army.
“Also, troops killed bandits, terrorists in different encounters in North –DHQ,” he informed.
He said the commissioning ceremony was significant considering the myriad of security challenges confronting the country, especially insurgency and banditry in the North East and North West zones respectively.
The minister urged the new officers to brace up for the task ahead of them, adding that many of them would be subsequently deployed to support the various ongoing internal security operations.
“Your commissioning today is coming at a time when the Nigerian Army is engaged in different operations in response to the myriad of security challenges.
“These include counter-insurgency operation in the North East and anti-banditry operation in the North West, among others.
“Most of you will find yourself in various theatres in support of these operations.
“I am certain that your training has inculcated in you a high standard of discipline and professionalism, which you would be expected to inculcate in addressing these security challenges.
“We expect nothing, but total commitment, loyalty, selflessness and sacrifice from you.
“I implore you to put all that you have learnt into practice in the discharge of your assigned roles,” he said.
Magashi, however, enjoined the cadets to leave up to oath of allegiance to be loyal to the President and Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and to the Nigerian Army.
He assured them that they would subsequently be posted to different corps of the NA where they would be exposed to further training in different areas of specialisation.
He said: “You must endeavour to continue to seek personal development, which will add value to your service to the Nigerian Army.”
He urged them to apply the tradition and customs of the Nigerian Army, and be conversant with the harmonised terms and condition of service of the army to guide them.
Magashi commended the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, for providing resources and direction to NASI, as well as the commandant and instructors, for the good job being done.
He also commended President Muhammadu Buhari, for approving the training, and for his unwavering support to the armed forces.
Magashi also commended the school for being able to conduct the training in spite of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), pandemic, without threat to health, adding that the success had been due to strict adherence to the guidelines.
“I must confess that from my observation today, NASI has undergone tremendous improvement in terms of infrastructure and I must commend the officers and the leadership of Infantry Corps for the positive transformation so far,” he said.
The 373 newly commissioned officers were later administered the oath of allegiance and decorated with the rank of Lieutenant by their parents/guardians.