The Bayelsa State Council of the Nigerian Legion has applauded Governor Douye Diri’s approach to their welfare since the inception of his administration.
Chairman of the Legionnaires, Elder Ogele Okubokekeme-Okus, gave the commendation during the Armed Forces Remembrance Emblem Appeal Fund Launch at the Chief DSP Alamieyeseigha Banquet Hall, in Yenagoa.
Elder Okubokekeme-Okus said the retired servicemen named Governor Diri their patron as a result of his magnanimity towards the widows and orphans of fallen heroes.
He said in the last three years, the governor approves a monthly overhead of N500,000 for the legionnaires office as well as provided a Hilux vehicle for their operations.
The state legion’s chairman congratulated the governor on his recent re-election for a second term and declared their continued support for his administration.
He said: “On behalf of the legionnaires of Bayelsa extraction, I use this medium to express our profound gratitude for the great support and welfare towards us since you came in as Governor of Bayeha State and as patron of the Bayelsa State chapter of the Nigerian Legion.
“We congratulate you on your re-election as governor for a well-deserved second tenure in office. We also express our appreciation for approval of the monthly overhead of N500,000 and the purchase of a patrol van for the state legionnaires.
“We are totally in support of your governorship just as we appreciate your good leadership and administration of Bayelsa State. We earnestly pray to the almighty God to give you more wisdom, strength and good health to pilot the affairs of the state to greater heights.”
Governor Douye Diri, in his remarks, appreciated the sacrifices of the ex-servicemen for the country, noting that their service was priceless.
He said the freedom Nigerians enjoy today came with a price from the fallen heroes.
He also thanked them for their support during the November 11 governorship election in state and extended his appreciation to the heads of military formations in the state for their professionalism.
The governor announced an increase of the legionnaires’ monthly overhead to one million naira.
He equally, on behalf of the state government, launched the emblem with the sum of N10 million and directed all his appointees to contribute compulsorily to the armed forces emblem appeal fund.
He said: “The Armed Forces Remembrance Day Emblem Appeal Fund is a sacred initiative aimed at providing support to the families of our fallen heroes and enhancing the welfare of our serving military personnel.
“You demanded for an upward review of the overhead that we give to you as a grant monthly. Every overhead has become insufficient and inadequate as a result of the somersaults in our economy and the value of our currency that cannot be compared to what N500,000 used to be. For that reason, we will review your overhead from N500,000 to one million naira monthly.
“I also appreciate you for the support we got as a government, particularly during the November 11 election. You and all the legionaries, and indeed, our serving military personnel in Bayelsa.
“For the legionaries, we had your support, particularly as Bayelsans. But for the serving military personnel, you decided to be apolitical and professional and allowed free, fair, democratic, transparent election to be held in Bayelsa State.”
Chief Press Secretary to the Bayelsa State Governor