By Soni Daniel, Northern Region Editor
A Nigerian Naval officer has been honoured in the United Kingdom for exhibiting rare enthusiasm and commitment to his training at the Britannia Royal Naval College (BRNC).
Sub Lieutenant (SLt) Abdulrahman Buniyamin was presented with a ceremonial sword by General Sir Gordon Messenger, Royal Marines, Vice Chief of the Defence Staff during the final passing-out-parade held at BRNC on 16 December 2016. Among the VIP guests invited to attend the parade was Brigadier General Gbolahan Oyefesobi, the Defence Advisor at the Nigerian High Commissioner.
The sword is sponsored by the Britannia Association, the College Alumni, and also recognises the Cadet who improved the most during training.
SLt Buniyamin trained at the College between February and October 2015, completing the 30-week initial naval training course alongside his UK counterparts. Through hard work and dedication he overcame initial difficulties to meet the standards required of him, putting in extra hours of study and foregoing his free time for private tutoring.
During his time at the world-renowned College SLt Buniyamin achieved a Royal Yacht Association Powerboat Level 2 qualification and became known as the first to volunteer for any extra task.
SLt Buniyamin, who is currently serving on the Nigerian Navy ship Burutu, said: “I am very happy to receive this prize. I put in my best effort for every activity, be it assessed or not assessed. My knowledge has improved by being here, which has made me a better naval officer back at home.”
BRNC is a modern military College steeped in traditional values. In 2016 the College provided initial naval training for nearly 500 cadets destined for careers in the Royal Navy, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary or overseas naval and defence forces. In addition the Royal Naval Leadership Academy has provided professional development courses for almost 6,000 Officers and Ratings across the Service. Members of the Royal Naval Reserve and the Cadet Forces have also had extensive use of the facilities at the College.
As part of the UK’s commitment to Nigeria, a resident British Military Advisory and Training Team in Nigeria coordinates an expanding programme of UK support in capacity building for the Nigerian Armed Forces. A Liaison and Support Team provides specific guidance and medical provision.
Some 2,000 Nigerian military personnel have received UK training prior to deploying on operations in the North East. Several thousand more have benefited from UK specialist military training.
More than 300 UK military personnel provided training to the Nigerian Armed Forces this year (2016). This is more than double the number of UK personnel who deployed to Nigeria on training tasks in 2015.