Nigerian Military School

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The Nigerian Military School Zaria, founded as the Boys-Company of Nigeria in 1954, was established under the auspices of Nigerian Regiment Training centre of the Royal West African Frontier Force (RWAFF). The school was established along with three others in the British Colonial West Africa in Gambia, Gold Coast (now Ghana), and Sierra Leone. It was modeled after the Boys Wing of the British Army. The present day Military School came into being on May 20, 1954. The Nigerian Military School (NMS) had a student battalion that consisted of 4 company in its early years: Alpha Company, Bravo Company, Charlie Company, & Delta Company. Three additional companies were added: Echo Company,Foxtrot Company, & Golf Company.[citation needed]The Boys Company as it used to be called was established as a full-fledged training institution under the regimentation and administration of the defunct Nigerian Regimental Training Centre (NRTC) now Depot NA.

The aim of the school was the production of "middle and skilled manpower" to replace the departing British Colonial NCOs. Thus, a lot of emphasis was laid on military and academic training. In 1958, ten Boys from the School sat for the overseas Armed Forces General Certificate Examination and the school changed to school certificate status.[citation needed]

In 1960, the name "Boys Company" was changed to Nigerian Military School. In 1965 the first set of Boys took the West African Examination Council (WAEC) examination in which they performed creditably well.[citation needed]With the introduction of the new National Policy on Education, the School now runs six-year training programme broken into junior and senior classes of three years duration respectively. A Board of Governors was established to oversee the running of the school.

To facilitate effective administration, Military and Academic training, the school is segmented into 5 main Wings: The Headquarters, Military wing, Education Wing, Boys Battalion and the Administrative Company.The first Commandant of the School, then known as Boys Company, was Captain WU Bassey.


The Nigerian Military School gives its students both academic and military training. Every boy soldier as the students are called has one day a week dedicated strictly to military training while the other four days of the week are dedicated to academic training. Similar to other secondary schools, the students sit for the West African Senior School Certificate Exam prior to graduation. The students also have the opportunity to be optionally enrolled into the Nigerian Army as private soldiers on the successful completion of their training and graduation from the secondary school.[citation needed]

The initial group of students was known as the "First Platoon" who were sons and wards of serving military personnel. However its military history can be traced to 1951 when the idea of establishing "Boys Company" along the same pattern of the Boys Wing of British Army was conceived for each of the West African Colonies Namely: the Gambia, Gold Cost (Ghana), Nigeria and Sierra Leone.[citation needed]

In 1960, the name "Boys Company" was changed to "Nigerian Military School" with four houses namely; Enugu, Ibadan, Kaduna, and Lagos House. To boost academic Excellency, Major Wakeman, a graduate, was appointed from the British Army Education Corps as Commanding Officer in 1962. The School therefore commenced five set years training programmed as a secondary school. It is important to note that the first set of ten ex-boys to enter the Nigerian Defence Academy in block was in 1966 while the first set to enter the University to train as medical doctors was in January 1972.[citation needed]

Notable alumni[edit]

NMS has produced numerous Senior Military officers and Senior Staff in both Government and Private sectors. Its alumni include


To encourage sporting activities and competition as attendance increased, four houses were created: Exham, Inglis, FairBanks and Swynnerton. These names were later changed to Giffard, Tranchard, Whistler and Lugard.

As the School changed to School certificate status shortly after independence, the house names were also changed to Lagos, Ibadan, Enugu and Kaduna. The new names were chosen to reflect the regional capitals of the country.

In 1976, two additional houses were added and the names were again changed. The new house names reflected military company designations: Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Echo, Foxtrot.

One additional has been added: Gulf, the 7th company. In late 2003, the School changed to the old names of Kaduna, Lagos, Ibadan and Enugu, with Abuja, Calabar and Zaria given to the additional new companies of Echo, Foxtrot and Gulf.


Since the establishment of the Military Institution, it has at various times been commanded by numerous Officers. They are as follows:

Commandant Took Office Left Office
Capt. WU Bassy 20 May 1954 31 Dec 1956
Maj CJ Grindley 01 Jan 1956 31 Dec 1959
Maj RK Gardiner 01 Jan 1960 31 July 1961
Maj JM McCarter 01 Aug 1961 28 Feb 1962
Maj PJ Wakeman 01 Mar 1962 09 Nov 1964
Lt Col TB Ogundeko 10 Nov 1964 09 Nov 1972
Lt Col TO Oduniyi 10 Nov 1972 02 Aug 1977
Col-BrigGen CB Ndiomu 03 Nov 1977 02 Aug 1982
Col O Daramola FSS AMNIN 03 Aug 1982 23 Sep 1985
Col. A Fakulujo FSS psc 24 Sep 1985 13 Oct 1990
Col-BrigGen FA Ogunribido FSS MSS 14 Oct 1990 31 July 1993
Col EBA Okodaso FSS MSS psc 01 Aug 1993 30 Jan 1995
Brig Gen HB Momoh FSS MSS psc mni 26 Jan 1995 30 Jan 1997
Brig Gen SA Sofoluwe FSS MSSS psc 31 Jan 1997 31 Mar 1999
Brig Gen SK Oni FSS MSS Ph.D 01 Apr 1999 25 Apr 2000
Col D Bitrus MSS psc 26 Apr 2000 13 Aug 2003
Col IG Bauka MSS psc LLB BL 13 Aug 2003 05 Sep 2005
Col CO Esekhaigbe MSS psc B.Sc(Hons) MILD PGD MIMC 05 Sep 2005 30 Aug 2006
Col GJ Udi Fss Mss psc 30 Aug 2006 1 Sept 2007
Brig Gen FS Amuche MSS psc MSc 01 Sep 2007 04 Sept 2009
Col LF Abdullahi Fss Mss Psc Phd 04 Sept 2009 09 Oct 2013
Brig Gen JA Fayehun Fss Mss PGDE 09 Oct 2013 05 Nov 2015
Brig Gen MM Bunza Fss Mss Msc 09 Nov 2015 Till Date

External links[edit]