The Nigerian Army Officers’ Wives Association (NAOWA) on Saturday inaugurated staff quarters for NAOWA College and its Model Nursery and Primary School in Abuja and honoured some deserving members of staff.
While the staff quarter was named after Mrs Nnena Ihejirika, the 500-seat auditorium was named after Mrs Martha Bamaiyi, both former presidents of NAOWA.
While Mrs Bamaiyi established the NAOWA model school in 1999, Mrs Ihejirika established NAOWA college in 2013.
The incumbent president of NAOWA, Mrs Salamatu Yahaya said the structures were in line with her vision of “sustaining legacies and upholding the tenets of unity and service”.
Mrs Yahaya said that past leaders of NAOWA had carved a niche for themselves and secured ample space in the association’s hall of fame through their remarkable leadership styles and establishments of sustainable legacies.
She pledged to sustain the legacies through maintenance of existing structures, construction of additional ones, standardisation of facilities and capacity development for NAOWA members and staff.
“This commissioning ceremony is an avenue to celebrate and immortalize two great NAOWA past Presidents who have made noteworthy impacts in the growth structure of NAOWA.
“In this regard, we resolved that the newly constructed Staff Quarters here at the NAOWA College Abuja be named Mrs Nnenna Ihejirika Staff Quarters and the Multipurpose Hall at NAOWA Model Nursery and Primary School Asokoro be named Mrs Martha Bamaiyi Multipurpose Hall.
“This is indeed, our way of showing respect and also engraving continuity as a mantra in the leadership structure of NAOWA at all levels.
“It is also a way of preserving history for the benefit of NAOWA members, prospective leaders. staff and students of these institutions, as well as the public at large,” she said.
The NAOWA president said that the 19 members of staff honoured and rewarded with gifts, had put in an average of 15 years of meritorious services in the two schools.
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Mrs Yahaya said the gesture was to show appreciation for their hard work, commitment, perseverance and determination in the development of the schools.
She appreciated the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Faruk Yahaya, commandants of army institutions, commanders and other senior military officers for their support towards the establishment of the structures.
In his remarks, the Chief of Army Staff, commended the efforts of past and present leadership of NAOWA for their foresight in supporting educational development in the Nigerian army.
He also commended the association for taking the lead in addressing the needs of their homes as well as supporting the educational needs of their children.
The COAS pledged continuous support to NAOWA in their quest to touch lives within and outside the barracks.
The President, Defence and Police Officers’ Wives Association, Mrs Vickie Irabor, lauded the vision of past presidents of NAOWA who established the schools that had become flagship in the military community.
Irabor said the women had continued to hold the home front while their husbands were being deployed to the frontline to confront security challenges.
On her part, Mrs Bamaiyi thanked the NAOWA president for recognizing her contribution to the development of education in the Nigerian army.
She urged the association to sustain the vision of the founders and continue to build on the existing structures.
Mrs Ihejirika, on her part, commended the successive NAOWA leadership for sustaining and expanding the legacies of the past leaders.
She thanked Mrs Yahaya for honouring her by naming the college’s staff quarters after her.
Highlight of the event was the presentation of various gift items including plasma LED television set to 19 teaching and non-teaching staff of the schools for their meritorious service over the years.