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By: Ade Adeleke
The 32 Artillery Brigade Nigerian Army in collaboration with the National Institute for Cultural Orientation has held its inauguration ceremony for the maiden edition of the Nigerian Indigenous language programme geared towards making officers and soldiers proficient in the 3 indigenous languages of Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa.
With this feat, the Brigade has keyed into the policy directive of the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt Gen Tukur Yusufu Buratai, which is – all formations and units of the Nigerian Army are to commence teaching of the 3 major Nigerian languages to officers and soldiers.
In a Press Statement, Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, 32 Artillery Brigade, Captain Victor Olukoya, the step is due to the current engagement of Nigerian Army in various internal security operations which require troops to effectively communicate with the locals to foster cordial civil military cooperation and intelligence gathering.
In his remarks to kick start the training at Owens Cantonment, Akure, the Ondo Capital, the commander 32 Artillery Brigade, Brigadier-General Zakari Logun Abubakar stressed the importance of the programme to the personnel of the Brigade.
According to Zakari, “proficiency in these languages will enhance the performance of personnel in the conduct of operations as it will improve their ability to communicate and integrate effectively with the local communities”.
The Commander thanked the COAS for his strategic direction and unwavering support to the Brigade, and the General Officer Commanding(GOC) 2 Division Major General Fidelis Azinta for his support for the programme.
Zakari also appreciated the zonal coordinator National Institute for Cultural Orientation, Mr James Imohiosen for collaborating with the Brigade to achieve the COAS policy directive.
Highlight of the occasion was the commissioning of the renovated and equipped lecture rooms by the GOC 2 Division represented by the Commander 2 Division Ordinance Services Brigadier General AJ Aliyu.
Other dignitaries at the occasion were the State Director, National Orientation Agency Mr Bode Famose, Permanent Secretary, Ondo State Ministry of Education Reverend Akinkugbe Asaniyan, General-Manager, Nigerian Television Authority, Akure Mr Segun Ojelade, the State Coordinator of National Youth Service Corps, Mrs Grace Akpabio and heads of security agencies in Ondo State.