Saturday, September 13, 2014 2:51 pm
The late General Benjamin Adekunle who died this morning at the age of 78 has been described as a Soldier’s Soldier, a man of valour and unimaginable bravery, lion-hearted and a leader of men who served his Fatherland devotedly and without question when the country most needed him.
Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos and All Progressives Congress, APC, national leader, paid tributes to Adekunle, alias Black Scorpion, in a statement he issued today.
In Tinubu’s words: “The Generalissimo has fallen. The Great General Benjamin Adekunle (Rtd.) has left this world and his departure saddens me greatly. Like most great men, he was greatly misunderstood. His flamboyant and outspoken nature made him a colourful character. However, that never stopped him from emerging as one of the most remarkable icons in Nigeria’s military history.”
The Black Scorpion, as Tinubu submitted, was a man of uncommon intelligence and fierce determination. On the battle field, he had no equal. He represented the best generation of our military personnel. The ones who refused to back down from any enemy; who put their very existence on the line for our continued coexistence. He added that of all of Gen. Adekunle’s qualities, “it is his loyalty to the flag that I most admire,” adding that he was a worthy ambassador of his people and a great example in service. He led from the front.
“Here is a man who gave his country the best of his life. May his warrior soul find rest. And I pray his wife, family find the fortitude to bare the irreparable loss.”
Nigeria’s most famous war hero, Benjamin Adekunle (rtd), popularly known as ‘Black Scorpion’ died today.
Adekunle was born in Kaduna on 26 June 1936. His father was a native of Ogbomosho in Oyo state, while his mother was a member of the Bachama tribe. He had secondary education at the Government college, Okene, Kogi State.
He enlisted in the Nigerian Army in 1958, and was trained at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the UK. He was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant on December 15, 1960.
Adekunle served in the Congo as a peace keeper and also served as ADC to the governor of the eastern region, Sir Akanu Ibiam.
He briefly served as Adjutant General at the Army Headquarters in May 1965 and was appointed the commander of the Lagos Garrison as a substantive Lt. Col.
When the Nigerian Civil War erupted in July 1967, Adekunle played valiant roles in the 3 Marine Commando, some of which have entered the myths of history.
He was retired from the army in 1974
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