By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
New Chief of Army Staff, Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru on Thursday took over leadership of the Nigerian Army from his predecessor Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai.
The Handing and Taking over ceremony between Lt Gen Tukur Buratai and the new Chief of Army Staff took place at Army headquarters, Abuja with Major General Attahiru calling on all the PSOs, GOCs, Corps Commanders, Directors to give a standing ovation to Lt. General Buratai for the very high levels he has taken the Nigerian Army.
In his farewell speech, Gen. Buratai emphasized some key achievements he will like to be remembered for during his tenure as Chief of Army Staff saying, “These are improved professionalism in the Nigerian Army, improved responsiveness in the training, administration and logistics needs of the Nigerian Army as well as improvement in the welfare needs of soldiers, officers and men of the NA.
Gen Buratai added that “During my tenure, the Nigerian Army ensured the defence and sustenance of democracy including improvement of the responsiveness to the Nigeria’s Democratic imperative”.
He noted that his achievements within 66 months when he superintended the affairs of Army included increased Civil military relations, introduction of new innovations, cyber warfare command, research and development, infrastructural development, production of fighting platforms (military hardware), among others which has drastically stabilized the security challenges in the country.
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the privilege and honour to serve as the COAS until he honourably resigned saying, “I also appreciate the PSOs, GOCs, Corp Commanders, Directors, all officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army for their discipline, loyalty to the Commander in Chief and myself as the COAS”.
“I must specifically appreciate all the troops serving in various theaters of operation both at home and abroad. I must state that the Nigerian Army has been transformed into a responsive army in line with my vision which has been achieved. Improvement on the order of battle of the NA, in training, operations, intelligence gathering capability”.
Gen. Buratai who was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari in July 2015 as the Chief of Army Staff said he spent 40 years in service as a soldier including 66 months in office as COAS.
In his welcome address, Lt. Gen. Lamidi Adeosun, Chief of Policy and Plans described Gen. Buratai’s tenure as COAS as highly successful and rewarding tenure in terms of infrastructural development, welfare of personnel and soldiers, selfless service among others.
Adeosun noted that Gen. Buratai came; saw and conquered as COAS and wished him well in his future endeavours.
Recall that Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru was appointed as the new Chief of Army Staff on Tuesday alongside with other Service Chiefs following the resignation of the outgoing Service Chiefs on 26th January 2021.
While meeting with the new service chiefs on Wednesday, President Buhari had told them that Nigeria is “in the state of emergency” and charged them to pay more attention to the morale of the officers and men of the military.
He charged the newly appointed Service Chiefs to be patriotic in the discharge of their duties and be dedicated to ending insecurity in the country.
Before his appointment as COAS, Gen. Attahiru held several positions in NA , amongst them are the General Officer Commanding 82 Division, Nigerian Army Enugu, Deputy Director Military Secretary at the AHQ MS (A), Director Army Public Relations.
He was Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Director Staff Duties and Deputy Chief of Policy and Plans at the Army Headquarters as well as Chief of Logistics at Defence headquarters.