By Kingsley OMONOBI, Abuja
Following Wednes-days Federal High Court judgment that Vice President Goodluck Jonathan can perform the functions of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, as a result of his prolonged absence due to sickness, the Vice President was yesterday at the 2010 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration, accorded full presidential protocols as he was not only escorted to the tomb of the unknown soldier by mounted troops, but reviewed the military parade.

After reviewing the parade, the Vice President again kick-started the laying of the wreaths at the tomb while the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Paul Dike; Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Abdurahman Bello Dambazau; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice admiral Ishaya Iko Ibrahim; Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oluseyi Petirin and the Inspector General of Police, Ogbonna Okechukwu Onovo, all saluted the Vice President as they usually do to the President, before laying their wreaths.

Others who also laid wreaths  included the Senate President, David Mark; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Demeji Bankole; Chief Justice of Nigeria, Katsina-Alu; Defence Minister, Gen. Godwin Abbe; FCT Minister, Adamu Aliero and minister of State, Defence, Abdurahman Adamu among others.

After the laying of wreath, the traditional 21 gun salute was fired by the Brigade of Guards soldiers on parade after which the Vice President released the ceremonial Pigeons from their cage to signify that peace continue to reign in our country.

Present at the ceremony which lasted just over one hour amidst tight security after the whole vicinity of the Eagle Square and the National Arcade grounds were cordoned off, were members of the diplomatic corps, ministers, former service Chiefs, and top government functionaries.

The activities of the day had kicked off with Christian and Moslem prayers by the Directors of Chaplaincy and Islamic Affairs of the three services.

The consensus prayers being that God will take this nation greater, continue to keep Nigeria as one and make all ethnic groups see each other firstly as Nigerian and secondly as brothers and sisters.


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