Nigeria’s President and Commander in Chief of the country’s Armed Forces, Muhammadu Buhari has laid a wreath at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier, National Arcade Abuja.
He laid the wreath in honour of the country’s fallen heroes at a brief event on Saturday, to mark the end of this year’s Armed Forces and Remembrance Day celebration, held annually on January 15.
President Buhari, who was also the Special Guest of Honour at the event, was the first to lay his wreath, followed by the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.
Next were the President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan and Speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, followed by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Ibrahim Tanko Mohammed.
Others were the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magaji, who laid at the same time with his Federal Capital Territory (FCT) counterpart, Mohammed Bello, represented by FCT’s Minister of State, Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu.
They were closely followed by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Faruk Yahaya, Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Auwal Gambo, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Isiaka Amao and the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali.
The Doyen of the Diplomatic Corps, Republic of Cameroun’s High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr Salahuddin Ibrahim also laid a wreath on behalf of the Diplomatic Corps while a widow, Hajiya Aisha Lemu, who also laid a wreath on behalf of the widows of fallen heroes.
The event also featured prayers for the repose of the souls of the fallen heroes and lasting peace in Nigeria.
The prayers were offered by Group captain Taokeek Gidado and Air Commodore Dogo Barry, from the military Chaplaincy.
There was also a special gun salute in honour of those who lost their lives in defence of the nation.
At the end, President Buhari signed the anniversary register and also released pigeons, signifying Hope, Peace and freedom of Nigeria.
Earlier on arrival, the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, President Muhammadu Buhari inspected a guard of honour mounted for him as the special Guest, and reviewing officer.
The ceremony which holds on January 15 every year symbolises the end of the country’s civil war, which ended on January 15, 1970.
The event is also held each year, to honour and appreciate surviving military men and women who have retired from service, as well as to honour the wives and children of war veterans.
President Buhari, who arrived at the venue of the event donning a white native gown, was flanked by armed men of the guards’ brigade’s, back pipers and Presidential mounted troops.
Soon after a rendition of the national anthem, the President proceeded to inspect the parade, composed of officers and men of the Nigerian Army, Navy, Air Force, and the Nigerian Legion.
The event also witnessed the ceremonial 21-gun salutes and the firing of three volleys for the fallen heroes.