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FG unveils welfare programme for ex-servicemen

13/11/2015 16:21

The Federal Government on Friday said it would establish a foundation and a microfinance bank for ex-servicemen in the country as part of measures to improve their living standard.


Minister of Defence, Brig.-Gen. Mansur Dan-Ali (retd), disclosed this in Abuja at a news conference to unveil the programme for the 2016 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration.


He said that 2016 edition of the event would be special as it would be geared toward “motivating the Nigerian armed forces for effective service delivery.”


According to the minister, the contributions of officers and men of the Armed Forces towards the return of peace to troubled spots in our country cannot be overemphasised.


He said that Nigerians and the Federal Government were proud of the military and remained eternally grateful for their selfless service to the nation’s peace and unity.


Dan-Ali said, “In order to enhance the living standards and well-being of the veterans, the Federal Government, through the Ministry of Defence, has concluded plans for the establishment of the Nigerian Veterans Foundation.


“When functional, the foundation will provide, among other things, opportunities for employment in a range of organisations, including the public sector.


“It will facilitate ex-service personnel to reach future aspirations in civilian life and to engage in establishment of small and medium scale enterprises.”


He added that “the ministry has a far-reaching plan to establish a microfinance bank that will carter for the needs of the legionnaires and families of fallen heroes.”


He disclosed that other measures had also been initiated to support widows of fallen heroes across the country.


On the 2016 celebration, the minister said President Muhammadu Buhari would launch the Emblem and Appeal Fund at the State House on November 16.


He added that religious services to commemorate the event would hold at the National Mosque on January 8, 2016 and at the National Christian Centre on January 10, 2016.


According to Dan-Ali, the wreath-laying ceremony which is the climax of the celebration will hold at the National Arcade/Cenotaph on January 15, 2016.


He urged Nigerians and corporate bodies to use the opportunity of the occasion to support families of fallen heroes and ex-service personnel.

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