Over 250 golfers are competing for honours in the 1st Armed Forces Remembrance Day Golf tournament organized by the Defence headquarters in collaboration with the Nigerian Golf Federation (NGF) holding at the TY Buratai Golf Club in Abuja, to commemorate the 2023 Remembrance Day Celebration
Declaring the golf kitty open after tee-off, the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor who was represented by the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao disclosed that the tournament was organised in Collaboration with Nigeria Golf Federation (NGF) to celebrate the fallen heroes of the Nigerian military and retired personnel.
Emphasizing that the event was significant in remembering the nation’s heroes who had paid supreme price while defending Nigeria and also those still alive who had given their best in service to the nation, Amao said other sporting activities were also organised to mark the day.
He pointed out that tournament which is the first of its kind, bringing the armed forces to partner with the NGF in organizing a golf sporting event seeks to bring the armed forces closer to the civil populace.
“It is not only golf, we have so many other sport activities lined up for these occasion and this is just one of the activities.
In his remarks, the President of NGF and Director-General, National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC), Otumba Olusegun Runsewe, commended the CDS, Gen. Irabor for approving the partnership between the Defence headquarters and NGF to stop the distinguishing difference between the military and civilians.
Otunba Runsewe said there was need to celebrate the gallant officers and soldiers of the armed forces and other security agencies who laid down their lives for the peace and unity the country is enjoying today.
He declared that Nigeria had moved to the next level of golf development in Nigeria, noting that professionalism in line with world and global standadards have been introduced to sport of golf by the NGF.
Explaining that International Standard means, any measure on a golf course must be branded, he said, “I’m happy to show you that if you enter the course now, every measure has this international standard.
“We have over 250 golfers including professionals, amateurs, women among others, and it is an 18 hole golf course. Let me also assure you that with this partnership, we are going to open more windows in Nigeria”.
“Every professional will will go home with an appearance fee and over 29 professionals will be vying for trophies. The three winners will go home with prices.
Also speaking, the Director, Defence Information, Maj – Gen Jimmy Akpor, said the tournament was organised to honour the fallen heroes who had paid the supreme price to keep Nigeria together, those that are still living veterans as well as those who bore the scars of war and operations, and handicapped.
He said the sporting activities was aimed at building consciousness of the military and supporting them to continue to be the pride of the nation.
“So, while we are here doing this golf kitty, we also have those who are injured who are also playing a game at the National Stadium as we speak. They are playing the Citizen Sitting Volleyball competition as well as Wheelchair basketball,” he said.
During the Sitting Volley ball game, wounded members of the military including those whose legs were amputated in theatres of operation know as Invictus team played the Team FCT at the indoor arena of the National Stadium.
Team leader, Ojeh Bobby said the Invictus games is an international multi-sport event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women, both serving and veterans.
“The game shows the power of sports in recovery , Through this, we have a wider understanding of what our veterans go through and why the need for recovery. That’s why the invictus game has partnered for tribute to our troops to recognize and help wounded soldiers through sports.”