The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai has described the Nigerian Army School of Infantry (NASI) as the nucleus of military operations and important in achieving the training mandate of the army.
Buratai spoke on Saturday at the ground breaking ceremony for the building of the headquarters of the school at Jaji Cantonment in Kaduna.
He said the school had gone beyond its primary role of churning out trainees of infantry courses to engage in wide range of tasks central to the accomplishment of the army’s roles, especially the fight against terrorism.
He said: “It is therefore pertinent the Nigerian Army provides befitting structures and conducive environment for the officers and soldiers, who are the forefront of achieving these roles
“I am pleased to note that the hitherto notion being held by officers and soldiers that Jaji is a punishment ground has become a thing of the past.”
According to him, over the past two years, attempts have been made at improving the living, learning and training conditions in the school.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that N17.5 million was realised at the ceremony.
While Commander, Infantry Corps and Corps Commander Engineer donated N4 million each, the General Officers Commanding 1, 2, 6 and 82 Divisions of the Nigerian Army donated N3 million, N3.5 million, N4 million and N3 million, respectively.
NAF empowers youths on agriculture
In line with the Chief of Air Staff’s vision to empowering youths living in the barracks to be economically independent and curb social vices among them, the Nigerian Air Force weekend flagged off planting season for the Port Harcourt Chapter of the Base Youths Empowerment Through Agriculture (BYETA) Programme.
Speaking at the ceremony, Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar said the current NAF leadership was committed to developing capacity of not only its personnel, but also of the youths residing on NAF Bases.
Represented by the Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Tactical Air Command, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Isiaka Amao, the CAS said “youths represent the future and a misdirected youth population will ultimately lead to a misdirected community.”
He said BYETA members had been encouraged to form agriculture cooperative societies for the purpose of accessing loans to boost food production; adding that NAF Investments Limited would fund some aspects of the BYETA Programme.
The CAS urged all youths above 18 years and residing in NAF Bases to take advantage and “fully participate” in the scheme to enhance their resource base. He also urged them to learn a skill, which he said would be help them later in life.
Earlier, Commander 115 Special Operations Group, Air Commodore Elijah Ebiowe said 106 youths were participating in the BYETA Programme, which he said was a sharp improvement from only 45 youths that initially showed interest.
According to him, asides crop production, plans were underway to commence training in fishery and poultry.
“In addition, the Unit intends to collaborate with viable agricultural agencies that could promote training and also grant needed sponsorships for the programme,” he said.
It would be recalled that BYETA Programme was first launched in the NAF in Year 2016. The scheme, according to NAF spokesperson, Air Vice Marshal Olatokunbo Adesanya, has been replicated in Makurdi, Kaduna, Lagos and Benin.