The armed forces are more determined now to end terrorism in the Northeast, the Minister of Defence, retired Maj.-Gen. Bashir Magashi, said in Abuja on Friday.
Addressing newsmen on the 2022 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration (AFRDC) he said they would also confront and end other security challenges facing the country.
He said the current determination was evident in the on-going mass surrender of Boko Haram fighters in the region and successes being recorded by troops against bandits in the Northwest, particularly in Zamfara and Katsina States.
According to him, the contributions of members of the armed forces towards the return of peace to troubled spots in Nigeria cannot be overemphasised.
He said the nation remained eternally grateful to the gallant men and women who paid the supreme price for the nation’s survival and unity.
The minister said the AFRDC was meant to appreciate and celebrate the men and women who sacrificed their lives and time to keep the nation peaceful and secure.
He urged the service and ex-service men and women to take pride in the patriotic sacrifices they had and were still making for the nation.
“You are all part of a force that is highly admired and respected both at home and abroad.
“To the husbands, wives, children and loved ones of our military, this is a step to recognise the sacrifices you make every day and for this nation to reaffirm its commitments to you.
“Thus Federal Government looks forward to all our dear citizens in both the public and private sectors to support our veterans and families of our fallen heroes tremendously.
“This is the time to also remember those who have been incapacitated in various operations conducted by the military and to contribute towards rehabilitating them,’’ he said.
Magashi said the nation would continue to remember and honour the fallen heroes while also appreciating the challenges being faced by the loved ones they left behind.
He added that the Remembrance Day celebration would help to reassure the families and relations of the fallen combatants that the nation would continue to be with them in paying respects to their departed relations.
According to him, the celebration re-affirms the fact that their death was not in vain.
“It is also an avenue to encourage and appreciate Service personnel for their invaluable sacrifices to our fatherland.
“The Year 2022 Celebration will further afford us an opportunity to reflect on the sacrifices made in the current war against insurgency by our Service personnel in maintaining national peace and security,’’ he added.
The minister explained that the AFRDC was not peculiar to Nigeria, saying it is celebrated and observed globally.
He added that the day was celebrated in the past on Nov. 11 every year by member-countries of the Commonwealth of Nations to honour members of the armed forces who died during the First and Second World Wars.
Magashi explained the date was changed to Jan. 15 in Nigeria as the day to commemorate the end of the Nigerian Civil War.
Nigeria’s 30-month civil war ended on Jan. 15, 1970.