The Nigerian Army has pledged to continue to provide the needed support for the Nigerian Military School (NMS) Zaria to produce high quality manpower for the armed forces and the nation.
The Chief of Administration (Army) Maj.-Gen. Usman Muhammed, gave the assurance at the Maiden Edition of Ex-Boys Congress and award night on Saturday in Abuja.
Muhammed, who is also the Chairman, Governing Board of NMS, said the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, had continued to show commitment towards addressing all the needs of the school.
He urged the commandant of the school to bring forward all issues affecting the progress of NMS, assuring that all the needs of the school would be addressed.
“I think it is a worthwhile thing for us to see products of NMS doing well and I am always sad when I hear that products of NMS are not doing well.
“So myself and the commandant have sat down and we are doing a lot to improve on the quality of those who go into and also those who graduate from NMS.
“This is to ensure that at the end of the day, when they come out, they can stand up to anybody anywhere and you can beat your chest and say you are the best around.
“We will do everything possible and we are open to new ideas about anything you think we can do to improve on the quality of NMS,” he said.
The Commandant of NMS, Brig.-Gen. Jonathan Aun, said the school had undoubtedly produced seasoned military officers of repute and highly experienced technocrats that had contributed and are still contributing to the development of Nigeria.
Aun said that NMS has become a national asset which served as a nest to hatch and nurse national unity apart from supplying the quality manpower needs of the Nigerian armed forces.
He said the admission policy of NMS had ensured equity in the intake of boys across the federation, adding that it had created bridges for permanent relationships emanating from trust built over the years.
According to him, it is in NMS that a young boy from Ogbomosho can have a master from the far northern town of Numan and vice versa.
“This creates mutual trust and confidence which reinforces the vision of the founding fathers to remove prejudices in all forms for national development,” he said.
The commandant said the resuscitation of military training in 2016 after a little setback when it was suspended in 2011, had realigned the school to its mission and vision of harnessing future leaders.
“Today I am proud to represent the modern NMS that has been fully upgraded in terms of facilities and learning.
“Having served in NMS for 4 different times, I must state that the current interventions in infrastructural development can be best described as unprecedented.
“The barrage of infrastructural interventions by the COAS have provided the required facilities for teaching and learning and indeed further beautification of the school.
“The intervention projects include the construction of 2000 sitting capacity Dining Hall, 2000 sitting capacity Multi purpose hall, the completion of the Computer Based Test Centre, construction of NMS Officers’ Mess, WOs/Sgts’ Mess and Soldiers’ Club,” he said.
Aun pledged to sustain the current momentum to ensure that the school remained the best.
He also commended efforts of the different sets of Ex-Boys including those in diaspora who had undertaken projects and donated equipment for the training of students.
“Morally, I stand here tall to testify that all of you have exhibited moral and financial commitments to the development of your Alma Mata.
“Many of you here have gone out of your ways to influence interventions or spearhead the collective interventions by your classmates or sets.
“Currently, the Chairman of the Governing Board who is an Ex-Boy has encouraged and made strategic efforts to secure the recent development in the school.
“Individual Ex-Boys have greatly contributed to the development of the school. Recently an Ex-Boy, Mr Sani Usman, an engineer, facilitated through the Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA) for the reconstruction of 3km road network in the school.
“Hitherto, Ex-Boys like His Excellency the Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Bello, had intervened by constructing a hostel (the new Calabar Coy) in the school,” he said.
The National President, NMS Ex-Boys Association (EXBA), Mr Femi Ikuponiyi, said their Alma Mata had remained the only reputable institution churning out noble leaders and pacesetters across the nation as well as a citadel of excellence across all endeavours.
Ikuponiyi said that NMS Ex-Boys was an assemblage of like minded, success driven epitome of professionalism and patriotic Nigerian citizens devoid of tribal and religious sentiments and united in their diversity.
He said the prevailing challenges of insecurity and economic imperfection was progressively beckoning on their participation across all spheres of the Society.
Ikuponiyi urged the Nigerian army to ensure that NMS remained as the benchmark for academic excellence, character molding and symbol of national unity that it was known for.
According to him, the results and reports emanating from the school has shown a great improvement at restoring the glory of the school.
“We must as exboys continue to pull together our efforts and resources to restore and reposition the vision and Pride of the Nigerian armed forces.
“In terms of infrastructural interventions, the school has received a good share of benevolence from various individuals and class sets,” he said.
The maiden Ex-Boys congress featured the election of new executive committee, reunion, dinner and awards to some deserving members.