…Says ” I Never Wanted To Join The Military, Providence Led Me”
The Nigerian Armed Forces Resettlement Centre (NAFRC), Oshodi, Lagos, has been agog with activities in honour of its Commandant, Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Kingsley Lar, who will be bowing out of the Military, after a successful completion of the mandatory service years.
The line up of events to mark the auspicious occassion included: Jumat prayer last Friday, followed by a golf tournament the next day.
A thanksgiving service where the Commandant expressed gratitude to God for seeing him through his sojourn in the Military, held on Sunday at the Saint Stephens Prostant Church, followed by a dinner, on Monday.
The pulling out Parade will hold tomorrow (Wednesday), 4th November, 2020.
Speaking with journalists at the Nigerian Air Force Golf Club, Shasha, the retiring AVM explained that the golf tournament was to host friends, interact with colleagues, family members and well wishes, as part of the general arrangements for the formal pull- out parade.
He said: “With golf, you cannot get exhausted because you start gradually at a time and by the time you are done, you would have measured up to 70 km. It’s quite useful for somebody that is above 50 years and remember, the whole idea is to retire healthy, go home and enjoy with your family.
And remember also, that with that age, you wouldn’t engage in sports that are too vigorous”
Recalling how he found himself where he is, the Commandant disclosed that he never planned to be a Military personnel but that providence urshered him there.
He explained that he only went to the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) to get busy while awaiting admission into the polytechnic.
He said: “When I was leaving the Nigerian Military school, my intention was to go to polytechnic to learn something technical and get busy in some productive activities but I remembered that the NDA result was the first that came out that year (1983) and I decided to report to NDA with the hope that when the other results would be out, I would abandon the NDA. But as God would have it, none of those results came out again. I decided to remain in the NDA, gave it my very best and here we are today.
“Like any other human endeavour, anything that has a beginning has an end. Officially, my course will be 35 years in June, 2021. But for my rank you retire at 56 years or 35 years in Service, depending on whichever comes first and I will be 56 years old this week” Lar stated.
The retiring AVM who has given a face lift to the centre since he assumed leadership there, attributed his success story to the foundation laid by his predecessors.
He said, “I want to put on record that my predecessors have done very well, there’s nobody who has visited NAFRC that has not expressed surprise at the quality of our infrastructure and the ambiance of our environment. You don’t do such thing in a day, those who preceeded me have committed their time and have also utilised the resources given to them judiciously.
“All I have to do was to build on what I met on ground. I want to place on record that it would not have been easy if those we took from didn’t lay a good foundation”
“I have no doubt that my successor is going to surpass what I have done by building on the legacy we have left behind. It’s in the DNA of the Airforce Officer to add value. You can quote me anywhere, particularly when we have the Chief of the Air Staff, in the person of Air Marshal SB Abubakar who is known for improving standards”.
He therefore, admonished young officers to work hard and stop trying to influence their postings or promotions, stating that such things would not help them.
He boasted to that in his 35 years in the Military, he never influenced his postings.
On his part, the incoming Commandant, Maj. General Akinyemi Olusegun, expressed shock at the level of transformation his predecesor was leaving the centre, within his nine months stay as the Commandant.
Describing the retiring AVM as a friend he had known for over four decades, Olusegun said. “We were colleagues in the Nigeria Military School Zaria. He was a year ahead of me. He is an amiable gentleman, hard-working, God fearing and highly professional. I guess he demostrated that to us here judging from the value he has added so far. He came in here for about nine months and has done wonderfully well” Olusegun added.