The Nigerian military has renovated classroom blocks, an examination room and an administrative block of the Okenya Public Secondary School in the Igalamela / Odolu local government areas of Kogi State.
The military also donated desks, notebooks and writing materials to meet the needs of more than 95 students at the school, and offered free medical services to vulnerable residents of the community of Okenya and its surroundings as part of its COCIM activities for the current exercise “Enduring Peace”. “
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony in Okenya, the Chief of Staff of the Army (COAS) Lt. Gen. Farouk Yahaya said the Nigerian military has over the years taken deliberate steps to give back to society the cooperation it has received through corporate social responsibility.
According to him, the gesture is in line with my vision of having a professional Nigerian army ready to accomplish the assigned missions in a joint environment for the defense of Nigeria.
Represented by the Commander of the Army Records Command (CAR) Headquarters Major General Okpe William Ali, SFOC said it has ensured that the military pays very close attention to aspects not kinetics of its military operations.
In this regard, the need to ensure that we have good and cordial relations with our civilian population and indeed the host communities where we conduct our military operations cannot be overemphasized.
“This cordial relationship necessitated the design of this school renovation project which is fully in line with the dynamics of civil-military cooperation (CIMIC) of the Nigerian army,” he said.
He pointed out that COCIM was designed to bridge the communication gap between the civilian population and the Nigerian military.
He noted that the projects ordered today were part of several activities related to civil-military cooperation carried out in various regions of the country.
He expressed optimism that the project would reduce the infrastructure deficits in the education sector in the communities and complement the efforts of governments to improve education in the long term.
He stressed that the projects would meet the collective needs of all members of the community and its immediate surroundings.
He pointed out that the Nigerian military had benefited from the support and cooperation of the good people of the communities in its attempt to overcome the challenges of insecurity in the country and in Kogi State in general.
The army boss assured that the Nigerian army, in collaboration with other security agencies, will spare no effort to curb criminal activity and ensure the general security of Nigerians.
He called on communities to view the project as a symbol of friendship between the Nigerian military and their communities.
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for his continued support to the Nigerian military and for providing the enabling environment necessary for the exercise of their constitutional responsibilities.
He further thanked the Minister of Defense and the Chief of Defense Staff for their necessary support and advice to the Nigerian military.
He praised the officers and men for their trust, loyalty and zeal to their homeland, while remembering the sacrifice of their colleagues who had paid the ultimate price to bring peace to the country.
He thanked Governor Yahaya Bello and the good people of Kogi State for their unwavering support especially to the Nigerian army.
He urged them to continue to live in peace and harmony and to be tolerant of one another.
In his remarks, State Governor Alhaji Yahaya Bello praised SFOC for the impact of the Nigerian military with regard to COCIM activities, particularly in Kogi State.
Represented by his special advisor for education, science and technology, Dr Gabriel Ottah, the governor stressed that education remains an essential key to all forms of development in any nation.
He said the administration under his leadership provided an enabling environment for education and other sectors to thrive in the state.
He noted that the state in 2020 allocated 20% to the education sector, which has now been increased in the 2022 budget to 30%.
He praised the efforts of individuals and businesses to ensure quality education in terms of providing infrastructure and other facilities to schools.
However, he urged students to be hardworking, obedient and law-abiding, which remained the key ingredients for success in life.
“We know there is more to do, but we promise to do more. We ensure that the well-being of teachers will receive adequate attention, ”he said.
Previously, Major General James Ataguba, the Chief of Standards and Assessment of the Army (CASE), and son of the soil, congratulated SFOC for its good gesture towards the inhabitants of its communities.
“Before the intervention of the Army, some friends and I had started some work but because of the enormity of the work, the community sorts the intervention of the SFOC.
“Today we are witnessing one of the results of an approval made by SFOC in the last quarter of last year when it gave direction through the Civil-Military Affairs Department at Headquarters. army to increase renovations at GSS Okenya, ”he said. .
He therefore thanked Almighty God for allowing them to witness the auspicious occasion and for giving them the means and the courage to start and carry out the project.
The traditional leader of the community, Chief Sunday Haruna Akor, Ochalla Attah Igala of Okenya, congratulated the SFOC for the gesture towards his communities while appreciating Major General Ataguba for making the community proud.
The principal of the school, Mr. John Amana, noted that the school was established in 1980, but that there were no pupils on the ground in 2019, when he was assigned to the school. .
He commended SFOC for the renovation and supply of desks while appreciating Major General Ataguba for facilitating the project, adding that the school now has a population of 85 to 90 students.
He noted, however, that the school needed more staff as it was understaffed, as well as a library, security, access road, water pipe, an ICT house, electricity, among others.
In addition to the renovations and free medical services, the military also donated ten notebooks and writing materials to each of the students.
The beneficiaries of the medical services, who also received free screening, medicines and impregnated mosquito nets, thanked the COAS for remembering the vulnerable at the base.
Patience Abu and Alimat Mustapha expressed their immense joy for the gesture of Nigerian Arny, and for the distribution of notebooks to their children.
The highlight of the occasion was the presentation of souvenirs to the governor and traditional chief, by the commander of the CAR on behalf of SFOC.
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