In commemoration of this year’s Armed Forces Day, the Rivers State Government has initiated the sum of N100million empowerment scheme aimed at improving the living condition of the families of late ex-servicemen and living legionnaires.
Addressing legionnaires at the 2017 Armed Forces and Remembrance Day Celebration finale at the open court of the Government House, Port Harcourt on Sunday, the governor of the state, Barrister Nyesom Ezebunwo Wike said that the N100million empowerment scheme was an appreciation of the fact that the late ex-servicemen and their living colleagues invested their lives in the sustenance of the country.
The governor said: “This empowerment scheme is to show the families of late ex-servicemen and their living colleagues that we appreciate the sacrifices they made for the country. We don’t want the families they left behind to continue to suffer. I urge the Nigerian Legion to carefully manage the empowerment scheme in a way that the wives of late ex-servicemen and other legionnaires will benefit and set up businesses to sustain them.”
He called on corporate citizens and privileged Nigerians to take practical steps to appreciate members of the Nigerian Legion and their families, adding that the remembrance of the sacrifices of living and late members of the Armed Forces should go beyond the annual ritual of Armed Forces and Remembrance Day Celebration.
Governor Wike called on Nigerians to re-dedicate themselves to the service of the nation by following the examples of members of the Armed Forces and commended the Nigerian Armed Forces for dislodging Boko Haram from the Sambisa forest, pointing out that the feat would lead to increased peace in the country.
He lauded President Muhammadu Buhari and the Service Chiefs for strengthening the Armed Forces to take up elements who threatened the peace of Nigeria.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Chairman of the Nigerian Legion in Rivers State, Col. Wilberforce Josiah (rtd) commended Governor Wike for his support to the legion.
During the celebration of the 2017 Armed Forces and Remembrance Day Celebration at the Isaac Boro Park in Port Harcourt, Governor Wike inspected the guard of honour, took the national salute, and released the pigeons of peace.
The occasion was enriched with prayers for the repose of the souls of late ex-servicemen and the Nigerian Armed Forces by the military Chaplains and the military Imams.
Governor Nyesom Wike, the Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani, the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Adama Iyayi-Lamikanra, Service Commanders, and the Chairman of the Rivers State Traditional Rulers’ Council, King Dandeson Jaja, laid wreaths in honour of the fallen soldiers at the cenotaph of the unknown soldier.