“The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.”
– Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States, former U.S. Army Colonel
“I believe God is managing affairs and that He doesn’t need any advice from me. With God in charge, I believe everything will work out for the best in the end. So, what is there to worry about?”
– Henry Ford, businessman, founder of Ford Motor Corporation
The above quotes capture the true personality of the person I am writing about
Attaining the enviable rank of a two-star Major General in the Nigerian Army is like asking a young ambitious boy to swim across the Atlantic Ocean without any safety vest or guard. However, it is the glorious end of the journey that attracts encomiums and garlands. The proud people of Amaogwugwu, a notable community in Umuahia, Abia State, are rolling out the drums and inviting neighbouring traditional rulers, friends and well-wishers to celebrate the homecoming of their son, Major General Chukwunedum Martins Abraham, who joined the Nigerian Armed Force as a member of 34th Regular Combatant Course in 1983 without the help of any godfather but on personal merit.
Here is an ambitious young man who, without any introductory letter either from a serving minister or a governor, believed in his personal ability and sat for the military exam. Today, after rigorous rudiments of the military, he has joined the eminent class of gallant generals of Abia State who have distinguished themselves in all spheres. Generals like Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi-Ironsi, the first Nigerian military Head of State, Brigadier General Chinyere, Ike Nwosu, Anthony Obi, Azubuike Ihejirika, retired Nigerian Army lieutenant general and former Chief of Army Staff, Rear Admiral Chijioke Kaja, Major General Ajunwa, a well travelled, experienced and exposed officer.
General Chukwunedum Martins has brought foreign applause and commendation to Nigeria sequel to his outstanding international performance like: Benin Republic, National Honour of Ordre de Chevalier de Benin, General Service Star (GSS), Passed Staff College (psc), Fellow National Defence College (fdc), Field Command Medal of Honour (FCMH) and Command Medal (CM) . The checkered journey in the military not withstanding, General Abraham stood tall like a colossus not allowing the whims and caprices of his profession affect his true personality. This is a time to sit down and re-evaluate ones outing in the military and address areas of shortcomings professionally and seek forgiveness where necessary.
For a young man to be “condemned” to a life of wearing uniform and tightening the tummy with a thick belt and wearing very thick boots for 35 years is not a mean exercise. Many have not enjoyed good health to complete the race, while others have allowed greed and selfishness to becloud their sense of judgement and professionalism.
The people of Abia have cause to rejoice with their son who did not bring shame or reproach to them, in 35 years of service, with no stained record or disciplinary action following any of his activities among his professional colleagues and members of the public. No wonder he is described in many quarters as the best and most reliable officer to work with, a humble and unassuming friendly officer. To junior officers, he is a dependable father in uniform, and to senior officers he is a trustworthy friend and colleague.
At his last birthday in office, the entire Defence Intelligence Agency went agog as junior and senior officers planned a ‘coup’ for his birthday celebration, which turned out to be the most celebrated birthday of his career.
The Holy Bible says in Proverbs 22:29, “Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.” General Abraham has witnessed the good, the bad and the ugly in his military career. No wonder even the military noticed his pioneer spirit, as the pioneer Chief Instructor, Joint Military Attache School, at the Defence Intelligence College, Karu, and pioneer liaison officer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
General Abraham was equipped by training at the Young Officers Course (Infantry), Machine Gun Officers’ Course and Special Warfare Course at the ICCS, Jaji, and Military Observer and Staff Officers’ Course at the UN Training School, Ireland. Others include Junior and Senior Staff Course at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji, and the National Defence College, Abuja.
General Abraham has two major strategies that have worked well for him in his career. He has the physical sword, which is the firearm that he trained with and, secondly, he has the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God. Many in his office believe that he may become the first two-star General preaching the word of God across the country. Testimonies abound of his milk of human kindness.
A completely detribalised Nigerian, General Abraham schooled and started his military career in the North with the ambition to improve himself career-wise. He also schooled in the West. He had his first degree in Economics from the University of Abuja and master’s degree in Strategic Studies from the University of Ibadan.
Security File congratulates one of our most distinguished avid readers. We wish you the best as you settle down to observe the country from another dimension we wish you the very best in your retirement age.