For standing tall in a very challenging environment and delivering 38 years of sterling, disciplined service to his fatherland in the Nigeria Army; for lifting the image of Nigeria in the international arena of military service through quality, exemplary interventions and honourable conduct which earned both himself and Nigeria recognition from the international community, Lieutenant General Chikadibia Obiakor (rtd.), is The AUTHORITY Icon.
He is the highest ranking Nigerian soldier to serve the United Nations as Military Adviser for peacekeeping operations. This was in 2008. Before then, he was the Force Commander of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), a position UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan appointed him to in January 2006. No less a soldier’s soldier, he also served longest in recent memory, as a General in the Nigeria Army. Meet Lieutenant General Chikadibia Obiakor (rtd.)
He started his military career with the Nigerian Army in 1973. He has served as the Commander of the Economic Community of West African States Monitoring Group (ECOMOG) Artillery Brigade in Liberia (1996 and 1997), the ECOMOG Chief Coordinator of the Liberian elections in July 1997 and as the General Officer Commanding, Second Mechanized Division of the Nigerian Army. He also held the position of Chief of Administration of the Nigerian Army, in charge of the welfare, discipline and medical services for all Nigerian military personnel.
Lieutenant General Obiakor is a graduate of the National War College in Abuja. He obtained a Master of Science degree in strategic studies from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria and has participated in numerous international military courses.
He disengaged from the army on 11th June 2011, after 38 years of sterling service. In a message to his colleagues, Gen. Obiakor told officers and men of the Nigerian military to face the challenges of their responsibilities by enhancing their state of professionalism. He spoke at his pulling-out parade at the Mogadishu Cantonment Abuja, where he stated that the military “must at all times remain focused and tenacious in fulfilling our constitutional role”.
His words: “I know am leaving a Nigerian Army that is committed to its constitutional responsibilities and will continue to contribute meaningfully to the entrenchment of the nascent democracy. Having served as a Nigerian and international military officer I am glad to say boldly that our Army has officers and men that are truly professional and committed to the ideals of democratic values.”
Gen. Obiakor extolled the nation’s contribution to world peace through the Peace Support Operations (PSOs), noting that “this chosen course by Nigeria is not only humane but divine and it is my wish and prayer that God continues to bestow on our leaders the political will to stay the course.”