Lt. Col. Muhammad Abu Ali who was killed by Boko Haram is one of Nigeria’s finest and bravest soldiers in recent history.
He was born on 15th August, 1980 to the family of Alhaji Abu Ali who was also a serving senior military officer of the Nigerian Army.
Lt. Col. Muhammad Abu Ali was a Nigerian Army officer who Commanded the Army’s 272 Tank Battalion.
Abu Ali graduated from Command Secondary School, Jos in 1997 and was admitted to the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna in 1998. He was a member of the 50th Regular Course. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant into the Nigerian Army Armour Corps in September 2003.
His father, retired Brig. Gen Abu Ali Mopa III, is the Etsu of Bassa-Nge Kingdom in Kogi State.
Lt. Col. Muhammad Abu Ali participated in the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) for one and a half years, and was involved in United Nations Missions in Darfur (UNMO) Sudan for another one year.
In both outings, he exhibited excellent performance. As a result of his bravery in the war against Boko Haram, he received an accelerated promotion from the rank of Major to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
He also received a gallantry award by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Yusuf Buratai in September 2015. Lt. Col. Abu Ali received the Chief of Army Staff award in Gamboru for exceptional bravery.
This was personally presented to him by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Yusuf Buratai on September 9, 2015 for his superior performance in the fight against Boko Haram.
Unfortunately, in the heat of all the achievements, Lt. Col. Muhammad Abu Ali along with 6 other soldiers were ambushed and killed by Boko Haram on November 4, 2016.
For emphasis, he was killed in an ambush by Boko Haram in Fatori, Borno State while serving his country at the highest level of loyalty to Nigeria and Nigerians.
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He was buried on November 7, 2016 at the National Military Cemetery, Abuja; leaving behind, a lovely wife, Mrs. Samirah Abu Ali and three young children, Fatima M. Abu Ali, Muhammad M. Abu Ali and Aseeya M. Abu Ali.
In February 2015, Ali led one of Nigerian army’s fiercest-ever engagements with Boko Haram, which resulted in the retaking of Baga town in Borno.
TheCable suggested, among other things, that the federal government led by President Muhammadu Buhari name an army barracks or a school in Borno state after the deceased hero in an editorial that was published on November 7, 2016.
The writer fervently advocated for Ali to receive a posthumous national honor.
In 2021, the DHQ, in a ceremony to commemorate Nigeria’s 61st Independence Anniversary, honoured 12 officers and 12 soldiers for gallantry and professionalism. Lt. Col. Abu Ali was one of awardees.
Fatima Abu-Ali, his daughter, accepted the honorary award on behalf of Samira Abu-Ali, Ali’s widow.
May his gentle soul continue to rest in peace.