President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf says she “will remember most” the former Nigerian Commanding Officer-In-Charge of the Liberian Armed Forces, late General Suraj Alao Abdurahman “for the important role he played in the transformation” of the army here.
The Commander-In-Chief of the Liberian Armed Forces spoke Friday, 21 August at the Monrovia City Hall where government held a memorial ceremony for late Nigerian the General who died on 28 January roughly after a year when he handed command over to Liberian Chief of Staff General Daniel Ziankhan on February 11, 2014.
“The commitment he showed in the establishment of targets, in ensuring that those targets were achieved; for the endeavors which he displayed as he worked with our army, our engineering group – to enable them to take on their responsibility of not only securing the security and safety of our nation, but making great contribution to the development our country,” she said.
As President Sirleaf thanked the late General Abdurahman’s Wife Hajia Fatima Wali-Abdurahman, the Nigerian Government and people for sending their “brightest and finest soldier” to Liberia, she described him as a dedicated public servant, outstanding genera, a professional, a scholar and a mentor.
President Sirleaf says it is the collective prayer of Liberians that the late General Abdurahman’s Wife Haja and her beloved children will remain strong and find the fortitude and encouragement from the outstanding life of her husband for the service he rendered in Nigeria and Liberia.
Due to the great services he rendered the Liberian government, President Sirleaf recalled that the fallen general was admitted in 2014 to the Knight Grant of Grand Commander under the Humane Order of African Redemption – one of Liberia’s greatest decoration to people of service.
She paid tribute to late General Abdurahman who commander the AFL from 2007 until February 2014, and his immediate predecessor Yusuf – also former Chief of Army Staff of Nigeria and former Commanding Officer- In -Charge of the Armed Forces of Liberia.
“These great generals have laid the foundation upon which the AFL now rests and continue to build; may the Almighty God grant these heroes – your heroes, our heroes – internal peace and comfort to their families,” she said.
President Sirleaf says General Abdurahman will be greatly missed for his rich military experience, exceptional leadership and unmatched commitment which he brought to the discharge of the … assignment which he took on.
She said this won for him from “all of us” the respect – the government, the people of Liberia and from the Chiefs of Staff of ECOWAS; and his work brought great honor to his country Nigeria.
Mrs. Abdurahman expressed “most profound gratitude” to President Sirleaf and the government for honoring the memory of her late husband by putting the event together, particularly recalling that he had already handed over command and was no longer in the AFL before he passed.
“May God continue to guide you Madam as you lead Liberia,” she said, also thanking officials of the AFL and the Ministry of National Defense. Tributes were paid by representatives of the United Nations Mission in Liberia, the Diplomatic Corps, and the Nigerian Embassy near Monrovia and Liberian officials from the Legislature, Defense Ministry, the AFL and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, among others. By Winston W. Parley-Edited by Othello B. Garblah