By OKOSUN OKHUELEIGBE
As events marking the 50th anniversary of Nigerian Navy Officers’ Wives Association (NOWA) were rounded off, a spectacular Christmas Carol night titled: “O Holy Night” and Gala night were held over the weekend in Lagos.
In her opening remarks, the National President of NOWA and wife of the Chief of Naval Staff, Mrs Theresa Ibas said carol service is one of the most potent images of Christmas whose reflection leaves us with happy thoughts.
She explained that the spiritual significance defines God’s love in the immaculate conception of Christmas.
Reiterating that every December, NOWA celebrates carols in unique style that brings every family together to appreciate the love God has for us, Mrs Ibas noted that this year’s edition is not “any less interesting with contemporary tunes.”
During the events, which held at the NNS Quorra Auditorium, Naval Base, Apapa, nine lessons were rendered and was well attended. Present were Naval officers, family and friends including the Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Western Naval Command and Naval Training Command (NAVTRAC) Rear Admirals Henry Osondu and AA Osinowo. Others were Rear Admiral Henry Babalola, Rear Admiral Olutoyin and their family members including students of both NOWA Secondary and Nursery and Primary Schools.
In his capacity as the Special Guest of Honour, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ette Ibas expressed concern that we no longer value human life hence a child of eight years old could strap bomb to her body, and kill others with it.
“The nation is going through challenges everywhere you go. There is trouble and that is why a nine-year old could take up a bomb and detonate it to kill people.
“Some of the ills we have in our country are because of loss of family bond; children are easily recruited by those that want to destroy our nation. Nigeria belongs to us and we must do everything possible to keep it.
“We have our brothers and sisters in the North East, Niger Delta and South East where trouble is going on. We must pray for them. Insecurity will be brought under control,” he said.
Admiral Ibas who read the first lesson taken from the book of Genesis Chapter 3 v1-9 was titled The Fall of Man. He added that “the yuletide is a season of love and joy. We must pray and thank God for sustaining us from January to now.”
There were carols rendition by the NOWA Nursery and Primary and Secondary Schools, NOWA, NARAWA choir, Navy Steel Band performance by Navy Secondary School, Ojo, Candle light procession and cutting of cake. There was also a Gala Night held at the Naval Base, Apapa.
Also speaking during the Gala Night and the launch of NOWA magazine “The Sailor’s Wife”, which held at the NNS Beecroft, Mrs Ibas reiterated NOWA’s commitment to embark on further humanitarian projects in 2016.
“Over the years, the humanitarian gestures of NOWA have grown in leaps and bounds. Her accomplishments, which are outstanding in educational projects with 12 well established secondary and primary schools, aside her other vocations of immense succour to the weak, the poor, widows, orphans and the lowly of our society, stand imposingly for any critical assessment.”
The CNS eulogized NOWA for playing a vital role in stabilizing the home front while the officers (their husbands) are out protecting the country and guaranteeing adequate security for the people.
Vice Admiral Ibas used the opportunity to solicit support for NOWA to enable the organization accomplish its objectives.