Helicopter Crash: Nigerian Military Honours Fallen Soldiers
Nokai Origin, Abuja
The Nigerian military has conducted funeral rites for soldiers who died both in battle and the recent accident involving the Nigerian Air Force MI-171E Helicopter in Niger State, Northcentral Nigeria.
At the National Military Cemetery in Abuja, a deeply emotional atmosphere prevailed as families and colleagues of the fallen heroes gathered to offer their final tributes to the deceased personnel, who were laid to rest with military honours.
— DEFENCE HQ NIGERIA (@DefenceInfoNG) August 25, 2023
— Nigerian Army (@HQNigerianArmy) August 25, 2023
The day was marked by sorrowful tears, heavy-heartedness, prayers, comforting words, and a commitment to track down and hold accountable those responsible for the killing of the military personnel who made the ultimate sacrifice in defence of the nation’s territorial integrity.
The arrival of the bodies of the fallen personnel at the National Military Cemetery, draped in the national flag, reignited waves of tears and anguish among the families who had lost fathers, brothers, sons, and friends, as they offered their final farewells.
As the Service Flags flew at half mast over the Cemetery, the National flags were handed to the next of Kin of the deceased by the service chiefs who gave words of comfort and appreciation to the families for the service rendered to the country. This was followed by the lowering of the bodies to the ground before the firing of the three volleys over the grave of the fallen warriors as a mark of last respect.
Speaking at the occasion the Chief of Defence Staff General Christopher Musa vowed that the military will not rest but hunt down the perpetrators behind the death of the slain personnel as he called on all commanders and all troops to avenge the slain men.
General Musa who paid glowing tribute to the men, assured the families that the death of their loved ones was not in vain as the military honoured their courage dedication and unwavering commitment to duty.
“They were men and women of honour integrity and incredible bravery, they accepted the call to serve fully aware of the dangers that lay ahead and yet they never wavered in their commitment to protecting the lives and property of our fellow citizens. These fallen heroes possess a rare blend of physical and moral courage, they face danger head on never flinching in the face of adversary.”
The Defence Chief equally sent a strong message to bandits, terrorists and all perpetrators of violence that the Armed Forces of Nigeria will hunt them down till they are brought to justice.
“I use this opportunity to all Commanders, all troops all over Nigeria that we must avenge this, those that did this and those that continue to kill our men wherever they are we’ll flush them out, and we’ll ensure they never have opportunity to kill any other person, this I assure. To the bandits, terrorists and perpetrators of violence who seek to sow division and fear among our people, know this, our resolve will not weaver, We will hunt you down, we will bring you to justice, and we will restore peace and security to every corner of our nation.”
He expressed an unwavering resolve to the families of the slain personnel that the Armed Forces of Nigeria will avenge the death of their loved ones.
it would be recalled that the troops on the 14 Aug 23 the Nigerian military sustained casualties following a firefight that ensued with bandits trying to cross into Niger state and the Nigerian Air Force Helicopter despatched to evacuate casualties of the gun battle crashed with 14 of the killed in action personnel, 7 of the wounded in action, 2 pilots and crew members of the helicopter were also killed.
The solemn occasion of the burial of the slain military personnel was attended by the Minister of State Defense, Dr Bello Matawalle, representatives of the Kaduna and Niger state government, service Chiefs, families of the slain heroes as well as sympathisers.