As Nigeria approaches another month of October when the country commemorates her independence, a photo showing the first 30 Nigerian military officers before 1960 has emerged. Below are their names.
Left to right sitting: Captain Robert Adeyinka Adebayo, Captain Philip Effiong, Captain Umeh Ogere Imo, Major Samuel Adesoji Ademulegun, Major Wellington Bassey, Major General Norman Forster (GOC, Nigerian Army), Major Aguiyi Ironsi, Major Ralph Adetunji Shodeinde, Captain Zakaria Maimalari, Captain Conrad Nwawo, Captain David Akpode Ejoor.
2nd Row Standing: Lt Igboba, Lt George Remunoiyowun Kurubo, (non Nigerian standing next to Kurubo), Lt J Akahan Akaga, Lt Patrick Awunah, Lt Louis Ogbonnia, Lt Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, Lt Eyo Ekpo, Lt Author Unegbe, Lt Abogo Largema.
3rd Row Standing: Lt Hillary Mbilitem Njoku, 2nd Lt Macauley Nzefili, 2nd Lt David Ogunewe, 2nd Lt Shadrack, Lt Alexander Madiebo, 2nd Lt Anthony Eze, Lt Yakubu Gowon, 2nd Lt Sylvanus Nwanjei, Lt Yakubu Pam, 2nd Lt Hassan Katsina.
The very first Nigerian to be commissioned officer was “Wellington Bassey” with Army number (N1). Two months later, “Aguiyi Ironsi” (N2) and “Samuel A. Ademulegun” (N3) were also commissioned. A short while later, “Ralph Adetunji Shodeinde” (N4) was also commissioned officer.