President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated former Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff and Chief of Defence Staff, retired Lt.-Gen. Alani Akinrinade, on his 80th birthday.
The president, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, in Abuja on Thursday, saluted Akinrinade’s steadfastness, courage and unwavering patriotism to serve the country.
President Buhari joined family members, friends and all professional colleagues in celebrating ”the gallant military officer who steadily grew in his career, reaching the peak at a young age and consistently projected virtues that endeared him to many at local and international levels.”
He affirmed that “Akinrinade rose to the occasion at crucial moments in the nation’s history, accepting to serve after retirement as Minister of Agriculture, Water Resources and Rural Development, Minister of Industries and Minister of Transport, leaving behind strong legacies of visionary leadership.”
The president extolled the courage and forthrightness of the former minister ”in standing for the truth at all times, and putting the interest of the nation first, which saw him fighting for the country’s return to democracy with the National Democratic Coalition”.
He also lauded him for working with governments and institutions to entrench democratic culture and values.
The President also acknowledged Akinrinade’s contribution to his initial constituency (military), and the nation, praying that the almighty God would grant him longer life and good health to keep sharing his experience and wisdom.