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Tributes, tears flow as Gen Zirkushu, 7 others buried in Yola

As Fintiri immortalizes late Gen, donates N27m to families of slain soldiers

Torrents of plaudits and approbations were today poured on fallen war veteran, Brigadier General Dzarma Kennedy Zirkushu alongside seven officers and men of the Nigerian Army who were killed by Boko Haram/ISWAP terrorists in an ambush on Nov 13, 2021 at Askira Uba local government of Borno State.

The other officers and men killed on the fateful day include; Maj. Luka Barde, Lt. Usman Abubakar, Private Salihu Mohammed and Private Danyaro Umar.

Others are; Private Simon Solomon, Private Abubakar Yusuf and Sgt. Oladejo James.

Dignitaries during the burial ceremony which took place on Friday at the cemetery of 23rd Armoured Brigade Yola took turns to eulogise the fallen heroes describing them as rare patriots and exceptional soldiers who made the supreme sacrifice for enduring peace and harmony to prevail in the country.

Leading others on the tribute galore, President Muhammadu Buhari who expressed deep sadness over the unfortunate incident noted that Nigeria will remain eternally grateful to the soldiers for their patriotism and commitment to enduring peace in the land.

The president who was represented by Boss Mustapha, the secretary to the government of the federation, (SGF), condoled with the Chief Of Army Staff and families of the slain soldiers pledging that their tremendous sacrifices will not be in vain.

The president promised to bequeath a peaceful and prosperous country that will ensure security of the up coming generations.

He prayed for the eternal repose of the souls of the soldiers whom he further described as resourceful, gallant and resilient soldiers.

Also pouring encomiums on the slain soldiers, the Chief Of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. Gen. Faruk Yahaya said, the Nigerian Army will eternally remain grateful to the fallen soldiers for the immense sacrifice and loyalty to the army and the Nigerian State.

He said for such valour, the Nigerian Army will continue to support the bereaved families as a show of appreciation to the gallant soldiers.

Yahaya pledged the Army’s commitment to support the education of the children of the late soldiers just as he promised immediate payment of emoluments to the families of the slain soldiers.

He urged colleagues and members of the general public to also lend support to the families of the slain soldiers in appreciation to the contributions of their slain parents for the peaceful coexistence of the country.

While commiserating with president Muhammadu Buhari, the Nigerian Army and the bereaved families, governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri urged the federal government to take charge of the welfare of those left behind by the fallen soldiers.

He called on the federal government to immortalize Gen Zirkushu by naming a battalion after him in acknowledgement of his exceptional patriotism, valour and rare leadership noting that the late General is a veteran who leads from the front lines.

He also charged the federal government to accord the General a post humous promotion as mark of honour for him.

“This indeed is a sure way to make us feel appreciated as relatives of the late General and boost the morale of officers and men who are on the field
prosecuting a war that is still raging,” Fintiri said.

Governor Fintiri said he has directed that the National flag should be flown at half-mast across the state, for the
next three days in honour of all the officers and men who lost their lives to the attack.

He also immortalized the late General by renaming Lagos Street, a popular street in the state capital after the fallen hero.

The governor also donated the sum of N10m to the family of the General as well as N17m to the families of the seven slain soldiers.

Also speaking, Governor Umara Babagana Zulum of Borno State expressed grief over the sad incident noting that the fallen soldiers deserved the respect of all Nigerians as they died trying to protect lives of other compatriots.

Zulum who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Simon Malgwi noted that as a show of their last respect, the Borno State government deemed it fit to attend the burial of the late veterans even though governor Zulum has led a powerful delegation on condolence visit to the family of Zirkushu in Kaduna.

He noted that the late soldiers deserved the respect of all and sundry for their supreme sacrifice of keeping the peace enterprise of the country.

In his vote of thanks on behalf of families of the slain soldiers, Eng. Musa Nimrod thanked the federal government, Borno State government, Adamawa State government, Kaduna State government, Minister of Defence, COAS, NDA and all others who in one way or the other showed tremendous goodwill and solidarity to the families of the slain soldiers.

He said the families will remain eternally grateful to all who registered their support during this tragic and most trying time.

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