Nigerian Army Declares Three-day Mourning To Honour Ex-COAS

By Damilare Adeleye

The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, has declared three days of mourning in honour of the late former Chief of Army Staff, Maj. Gen. Chris Alli (retd.).

Ali, who was the COAS between November 1993 and August 1994, died in a military hospital in Lagos on Sunday after a brief illness.

According to a statement by the Director, Army Public Relations, Brig. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, the mourning has commenced on Monday.

Onyema noted that during the mourning period, the Nigerian Army flag at all formations and units will be flown at half-mast.

He also said personnel have been directed to wear black hand bands in remembrance of the late former COAS.

The statement read, “COAS has declared three days of mourning starting from Monday, November 20, 2023, in honour of the Late Maj Gen Chris Alli (retd), former Chief of Army Staff, following his disheartening demise on Sunday 19 November 2023.

“During this time, all Nigerian Army formations and units have been directed to hoist their flags at half-mast, as a symbol of collective grief and respect. The directive also mandates all personnel to wear a black hand band in remembrance of the late former COAS.”

Onyema urged personnel to use the period to reflect on his accomplishments and the sacrifices made by soldiers in defence of the country.

He said, “Maj Gen Chris Alli dedicated his life to serving the nation through the Nigerian Army with indefatigable commitment and professionalism in the defence of our nation.

“In this time of grief, the Nigerian Army stands in solidarity with the family, friends, and loved ones of the late Maj Gen Chris Alli.

“The Nigerian Army charges all personnel to adhere strictly to these instructions, as a mark of honour and respect for our fallen hero. This mourning period is an opportunity for all to reflect upon his accomplishments and the sacrifices made by our gallant soldiers to defend our dear nation.”