Lagbaja Assumes Command As 23rd Chief of Army Staff

He also noted that the leadership style of his predecessor had led to an unprecedented number of repentant terrorists surrendering to the authorities.

Maj.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, the 23rd Chief of Army Staff (COAS), has officially assumed command of the Nigerian Army, succeeding Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, the 22nd Chief. Lagbaja expressed his commitment to carrying out his responsibilities with fairness.

Lagbaja acknowledged that it was by God’s grace that he had been given the opportunity to lead the Nigerian Army, a longstanding aspiration of every dedicated army officer. He commended his predecessor, Gen. Yahaya, for his exceptional leadership, which resulted in significant advancements for the Nigerian army over the past 25 months.

Under Gen. Yahaya’s guidance, the army witnessed remarkable progress, including the acquisition of state-of-the-art equipment and effective management of both human and material resources. Nigeria has already begun to reap the benefits of these achievements.

Lagbaja expressed his gratitude to Gen. Yahaya for his mentorship and for contributing to the advancement of his military career. He also noted that the leadership style of his predecessor had led to an unprecedented number of repentant terrorists surrendering to the authorities.

“Currently we are witnessing more than ever before massive surrender by repentant insurgents in the North East in a manner that beats the expectation of any observer locally and internationally.

“There is no doubt that the experience and exposure garnered under you will help in the discharge of my duties as the chief of army staff, as you transit into retirement on this glorious day.

“I wish to assure you that I shall do everything within my power to improve on your legacy of a proficient, effective and admirable Nigerian Army,” he said.

Lagbaja also pledged to enhance the accomplishments left by his predecessors in establishing a capable and professional Nigerian army. He emphasized that diligent efforts would be acknowledged and rewarded during his tenure.

“I promise that I shall discharge my responsibilities as COAS with fairness; merit and hard work shall be dully rewarded while appropriate measures taken to bring back in line anyone that errs,” he added.

Previously, Lt.-Gen. Yahaya, the former Chief of Army Staff, expressed his satisfaction with leaving the Nigerian Army in an improved state compared to when he assumed leadership. He highlighted the significant achievements made by the army in combatting insecurity.

He further stated that the adversaries are presently facing disarray across all operational zones and urged officers and soldiers to sustain the momentum.

“You must always conduct yourselves professionally in accordance with the ethics, customs and traditions,” he added.

Yahaya said, “You must continue to make deliberate efforts to improve your performance for heightened security, especially at this time of a new administration in our growing democracy.
“I charge you all to re-double your efforts in supporting the incoming Chief of Army Staff to achieve even greater heights.”

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