President Bola Tinubu has urged the Nigeria Defence Academy (NDA) to access the support it requires to invest in scientific research and technological innovations.
Tinubu made the call on Saturday at the Passing out Parade and Commissioning of Cadets of 70th Regular Course of Army, Navy, Air Force and Direct Short Service Course 27 Army and 31 Air force, held at the NDA, in Kaduna.
Represented by Vice President Kashim Shettima, Tinubu also enjoined the academy to develop prototypes and concepts that aligned with the Federal Government’s local content policies.
The President, who was the special guest of honour at the event, noted that it was time for the academy to be model for the continent.
He said that the institution was founded to lead the way in exploring scientific inquiries.
“The future of our great country doesn’t only rest upon the valour of these young patriots but also the curricula with which our warriors and scholars are formed.
”If we must take the centre stage in protecting our people, this Academy must access the support it requires to invest in scientific research and technological innovations.
“And develop prototypes and concepts that align with the Federal Government’s local content policies.
“This esteemed institution was founded to lead the way and boasts research centers dedicated to exploring scientific inquiries and translating our grandest ideas and theories into reality. Now is the time for us to be the model for the continent.”
Tinubu restated his administration’s commitment to eliminating poverty, terrorism and all forms of criminality in the country.
The Nigerian leader who is also Chairman of the ECOWAS, said his administration was implementing programmes and policies that would empower Nigerians to combat the challenges of poverty, criminality and terrorism.
”Every day, every minute, we are reminded of the consequences of economic and social disintegration around us. This is why we favour cooperation and the formation of bilateral and multilateral alliances to create opportunities for our people.
”We are implementing programmes and policies to empower our citizens to combat the challenges of poverty, criminality, and terrorism.
” From preparing for the food security crisis triggered by the Russian-Ukrainian war, to responding to banditry attacks on farmers, natural flood disasters, and the repercussions of military coups.”
He said that his administration remained vigilant in devising solutions to mitigate the impact and enhance national security
Tinubu said as part of moves to deal decisively with the criminal elements, his government embarked on a new era in the country’s national defence and security strategy.
This, he said, would be driven by a resolute commitment to confront the substantial threats and challenges that confront us within the West African sub-region.
“I have directed all heads of defence and security institutions to unite in their efforts to protect our nation’s integrity and well-being.
”And as Chairman of the ECOWAS, we are diligently working to enhance our regional conflict management and development mechanisms to forge a path towards greater peace, stability, and progress across West Africa and beyond is not negotiable.”
He, however, said that in tackling poverty inflicted on Nigerians by activities of the terror groups, he would treat every region equally and give them a sense of belonging in his government.
”Justice is the mainstay of prosperity, and we are going to be fair to each region. Whether in tackling the secessionist elements disrupting the peace and economic activities of the good people of the South-East.
”In doubling up our efforts in winning the counter-insurgency in the North East, and whether in pursuing normalcy in the North-West or in making the farmer-herder crises a thing of the past in the North-Central.
” Every group will be treated as equal and given a sense of belonging in our government.”
The President said his administration made bold decisions to bolster the nation’s economy.
According to him, even as some developed economies face the threat of recession, our commitment remains resolute.
He said that the Federal Government had intensified efforts to implement tangible measures that would alleviate the hardships caused by the removal of fuel subsidies and the unification of exchange rates.
Addressing the graduating Cadets, Tinubu said like those before them, they were “stepping into a world fraught with threats, a world that demands unique skill-sets to conquer the adversaries of the state.
” They are going to find themselves in a dynamic landscape, one marked by combat and regimental realities vastly different from those encountered by their predecessors”.
The Commandant, Nigeria Defence Academy (NDA), Maj.-Gen. John Ochai, expressed gratitude to the President for his unwavering commitment and support to the academy towards the realisation of the noble dreams of its founding fathers.
He applauded the personnel and staff of the academy for their unwavering efforts in discharging their duties and also the graduating cadets for their tireless efforts throughout their training.
He reminded the graduating cadets that the training they have undergone in the academy would enable them to take leadership responsibilities and positions as military officers of Nigeria.
” This is particularly against the backdrop that our country is presently undergoing some internal security challenges which are being efficiently managed by the arm forces.
” In recognition of this fact, you must continue to nurture the leadership qualities you have imbibe through your training to effectively contribute towards restoring peace and harmony in Nigeria.”
The commandant also urged them to remain discipline, law abiding and committed gentleman.
The event witnessed parades, march past, presentation of prizes to best graduating cadets, conferment of commission, presentation of parchment of commission as well as administering of the oath of allegiance.
The passing-out parade was well attended by eminent dignitaries, including the President of the Senate, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, Minister of Defence, Abubakar Badaru, Minister of State for Defence, Bello Matawalle, Gov. Uba Sani of Kaduna, Gov. Agbu Kefas of Taraba and the Deputy Governor of Borno State, Umar Kadafur.
Others are the Chief of Defence Staff, General CG Musa, Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. TA Lagbaja, Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral El Ogalla and Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal HB Abubakar, among others.