President Muhammadu Buhari, has charged the newly commissioned Nigerian Air Force (NAF) officers of Direct Short Service Commission (DSSC) Course 29/2020 to defend the territorial integrity and national interests of Nigeria.
The President gave this charge at the weekend during the Passing Out Parade (POP) of 114 DSSC officer cadets held at the NAF Base, Kaduna after 6 months of training at the NAF’s Military Training Centre (MTC).
According to a statement issued by Ibikunle Daramola, NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, the officer cadets comprised 2 medical consultants, 14 medical and veterinary doctors, 20 nurses and 78 other medical specialists.
Buhari, who was represented by the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Abayomi Olonisakin, reminded them that the occasion was just the beginning of yet another challenging but rewarding career as young officers in the NAF.
He further reminded them that the military profession requires absolute discipline, loyalty and hard work, among other virtues. He noted that these virtues were even more critical at this crucial point when the Nation is battling with the challenges of insecurity and the NAF, along with sister Services, is expected to secure the lives and properties of Nigerians to peacefully pursue their individual legitimate aspirations.
“Such noble service demands exceptional courage, commitment and patriotism and Nigeria will continue to demand such qualities from you”, he added.
Buhari also urged the young officers to do their best to further enhance the NAF’s efforts towards boosting qualitative healthcare for personnel, their dependants and members of NAF’s host communities, including sustaining medical outreaches for civilians and victims of insurgency and banditry.
“This pragmatic approach to promote civil military relations will go a long way in winning the hearts and minds of the communities, thus assisting in timely containment of insurgency, banditry and other security challenges”, he said.
The president also reminded them of the need to know the limits of their freedom of association and expression which must be matched with responsibility to maintain national security.
“You must also not allow yourself to be used by some elements in the society to compromise national security or act in ways capable of denting the image of the Armed Forces. Your duty is to protect all Nigerians irrespective of their ethnic background or religious inclination. Your loyalty must therefore never be in doubt at any point in time as an officer”, he added.