By Ndubuisi Michaels
Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General TY Buratai, along with Principal Staff Officers, Corps Commanders and other senior officers of the Nigerian Army held a Christmas luncheon with troops of Operation LAFIYA DOLE in the North East of Nigeria, Army spokesman, Gen. Sani Kukasheka Usman, has said.
He said specifically, the COAS was at Forward Operation Base (FOB) Delwa, Konduga Local Government Area (LGA) of Borno State where he felicitated with the officers and soldiers of the FOB and 7 Division Garrison on Wednesday 26th December 2018.
Usman said Buratai in his address to the troops, he paid tribute to the gallant officers and soldiers that that paid the supreme price in the course of fighting terrorism and insurgency. He also congratulated the troops for their bravery and steadfastness.
The COAS further inform the troops that the government and Nigerians appreciate their efforts. He also said that the President has promised total support to the military in order to bring the conflict to logical end. He however warned the troops to be wary of Boko Haram terrorists misinformation and propaganda aimed at demoralizing the troops to break their cohesion and fighting spirit. The COAS further said “you have decimated the Boko Haram terrorists, but they want to brainwash you through propaganda. You should not believe their lies and misinformation”.
Speaking further, Lieutenant General Buratai said that there are several elements who don’t wish Nigeria well hence their concerted efforts to bring disaffection among the officers and soldiers into logger head through false information and claims on the social media. He said the Nigerian Army would not allow that as his command would continue to do its best for the soldiers of the Nigerian Army. He added that the officers love soldiers more than anyone else and will never play with troops welfare and wellbeing.
The COAS also said that the Nigerian Army have made significant progress and sacrifices in the fight against terrorism and insurgency in the country, what is remaining is to clear the remnants of the Boko Haram terrorists through offensive actions, long range patrols and ambushes.
Highlight of the occasion was a field training exercise by the troops and a sumptuous lunch in which the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen TY Buratai, Prinicpal Staff Officers, Theatre Commander, GOC 7 Division and Commander Sector 2 Operation LAFIYA DOLE personally served the soldiers with food and drinks.
Those that accompanied the COAS to occasion include the Chief of Training and Operations (Army), Major General LO Adeosun, the Director Military Intelligence, Major General SA Adebayo, Chief of Account of Budget (Army), Major General CU Agunlanna, Theatre Commander, Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Major General BA Akinroluyo and the Acting Provost Marshal (Army), Brigadier General H Ahmed. Others were the Acting General Officer Commanding 7 Division, who is also Commander Sector 1 Operation LAFIYA DOLE, Brigadier General Bulama Biu and Commander Sector 2, Brigadier General MB Dala, amongst others.
The COAS was also represented by other Principal Staff Officers, Corps Commanders and other senior officers at the various locations of Nigerian Army deployments in Operation LAFIYA DOLE, where they also had lunch with the troops and deliver his goodwill message and words of encouragement. The visitation to troops locations and celebrations with them continues.