Immediate past Chief of Army Staff a (COAS) and Ambassador-designate, Lt. -Gen. Tukur Yusufu Buratai (rtd), on Friday, said that respect for elders was one of the pillars that propelled him to prominence in life and led him to the top of his military career.
The retired Army chief said this while speaking shortly after unveiling a book in his honour titled, ” The Legend of Buratai’, Vol. 2 in Abuja.
The book, which was co-authored by a seasoned journalist and essayist, Dr. Abubakar Sani, is a true life story of Gen. Buratai detailing his journey through life.
In his address, Gen. Buratai (rtd), urged the youths to always keep fit, adding that fitness was a very important aspect of life that many youths had not taken seriously.
He equally enjoined them to be devoted to God and have the fear of God in them.
The former Army Chief explained that the Volume One of the book was a fiction by Dr. Sani, and that the title of the book gained his attention which encouraged him to write Volume 2 by himself.
In the words of Buratai, ” As rightly mentioned, Volume One is a fiction and it came as a surprise to me and suddenly, it attracted attention both locally and internationally.
“Volume Two arose from Volume One because of the inspiration and its success. I said I must get it right and we must put my experiences right from the primary one,” he stated.
Buratai recalled how he almost got drowned in a pond and other encounters like his attack by terrorists, which he described as a ‘miraculous escape’, in the book.
The former Army Chief, now an Ambassador-designate thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the opportunity he gave him (Buratai) to serve the country at the highest level of the Army. He also appreciated those whose support he enjoyed while in active service.
He continued, ” I want to appreciate you all for the show of love and appreciation for a service that one had done for his fatherland.
“ I see it as something that is natural and normal and the secret behind that is, right from my school days, that culture of respect for elders, senior and parent had been what has been propelling me to remain humbled, focus and love everybody around me,” he said.
Chairman of the occasion and a Member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Jafaru Ribadu, commended the former Army Chief for his wisdom and efforts to document a thorough account of his journey as a military General.
Hon. Ribadu said that the book would help the public to understand the critical and often selfless roles played by the military in ensuring peace and security of the nation.
Also, a former member of the British Parliament, Hon. George Galloway, who delivered a keynote address, albeit virtually, described Buratai as an ‘asset to Nigeria’ and the world.
Galloway also described the former Army Chief as a ‘gallant general’ who had dedicated his life to service having commanded one of the largest armies in the world.
He commended Buratai for his role in ensuring that the Nigerian national unity was protected during his time as Chief of Army Staff.
He said the personal account of Buratai’s life in the book was apt, adding that the history of a person could be best written by the person.
According to him, Winston Churchill was once told that history would not be kind to him and Mr Churchill replied, “ O yes it will because I intend to write it myself” and I am glad to say that our gallant Gen. Buratai is now following.
He said that there were people who would choose to misrepresent one’s life and career, adding that it was important for one to write about his own account and events in life.
The book reviewer and co-author, Dr. Sani, said the book would serve as a role model for young people who want to aspire higher in life.
Sani said that the book had 125 pages and nine chapters, adding that it covered the early life of Buratai as narrated by him as well as the account of his classmate and close friend, John Atanda among other narratives.
He added that the book also focused on Buratai’s journey in the military and personal principles.