The Minister of Defence, Maj Gen Bashir Salihi Magashi has described as a rude shock and unfortunate the death in a plane crash of the 21st Chief of Army Staff Lt General Ibrahim Attahiru barely four months in the saddle.
General Magashi in a condolence message said the Air misharp that claimed the precious lives of the Chief of Army Staff, alongside other senior officers and his aides represents a huge national disaster.
While condoling the Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces, President Muhammadu Buhari, the Military and the Nigerian Army in particular as well as his immediate family and Nigeria in general he described late General Attahiru as gallant, dogged, disciplined and dedicated senior officer who died in the line of duty to his fatherland.
He recalled his unblemished track records of service to the nation as Director Army Public Relations,(DAPR), Theatre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole and as General Officer Commending, GOC which culminated into his elevation to the enviable three star status as Chief of Army Staff (COAS) in January this year.
He described his emergence as Army boss at such a critical times in the nation’s efforts at surmounting her internal security challenges as symbolically strategic but impactfully shortlived in the anals of the service.
General Magashi sadly noted that although the late General died when his service is needed most, his short but eventful tenure as the Chief of Army Staff and over three decades of dedicated, selfless and patriotic service will never been forgotten.
He prayed Almighty Allah to forgive Late Lieutenant General Ibrahim Attahiru and to grant him Alijannat Firidaus as well besiege God to grant the nation, the Military constituency and his beloved family the fortitude to bear the irreplaceable loss.