Nigerian Army Ranks, Salaries, Symbols, Logo & Badges (Updated).

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Nigerian Army Ranks, Salaries, Symbols, Logo  and Descriptions has been properly discussed here following the latest updated information.

Nigerian Army Ranks

The post-colonial Nigerian Army (NA) traces its origins to 1863 when British Naval Lt. Glover established “Glover’s Hausas.” He used the small force of runaway slaves to mount expeditions to the hinterland primarily to protect British trade routes.

From this humble beginning the West African Frontier Force later evolved and gave birth to the Nigerian Army.

Badges of rank of the Nigerian Army are mostly patterned after those of the British army, except that the Nigerian eagle (from the Coat of Arms) replaces the British crown on the insignia of officers of the rank of Majors and above.  Official source: [ ]

The Nigerian Army (NA) is the land division of the Nigerian Armed Forces and the largest among the armed forces.

Major formations include the 1st Division, the 2nd Division, the 3rd Armoured Division, 81st Division, 82nd Division, and newly formed 7th Division.

However in this article,  valid insight on everything you need to know about Nigerian Army Ranks, Salaries structure, Logo, Symbols, Description Meaning, Functions and Code of conduct has been properly outlined below.

In order of clarity, all you are going to learn in this page includes:

  • The Nigerian Army Rank,
  • The Salaries Structure Of Nigerian Army
  • About The Logo Of Nigerian Army
  • Nigerian Army Symbols,
  • Logo description and meaning,
  • Functions and Code of Conduct Of Nigerian Army

Functional Structure Of Nigerian Army. 

The function of the Nigerian Army is divided into two categories. These are:

1. Non-Commissioned officers:

The non-commissioned officers are those who have not earned a commission (a formal document that appoints one to a commissioned officer).

There are eight ranks of the non-commissioned officers in the Nigerian Army, they includes:

  • Master Warrant Officer
  • Warrant Officer
  • Staff Sergeant
  • Sergeant
  • Corporal
  • Lance Corporal
  • Private Recruit
2. Commissioned officers:

1. Field Marshal

The highest rank in the military. However, there is no written evidence that there were field marshals in the history of Nigeria. It has a five-star rank.

2. General

The highest rank that was in fact achieved by a Nigerian, four-star rank in Nigeria and ranked as nine by NATO.

3. Lieutenant General –

The high commissioned officer, three-star rank in Nigeria and indicated as eight by NATO.

4. Major General

The medium commissioned officer. In Nigeria, it is ranked with two stars while NATO indicates it by seven.

5. Brigadier General

One star rank in Nigeria, NATO indicates the rank by number six.

6. Colonel

The lower lever commissioned officer by the highest field officer. NATO gives it a five.

7. Lieutenant Colonel

The deputy to Colonel. He is the field officer of the middle level with rank four from NATO.

8. Major

The lower category of the field officer. NATO indicates it by three.

9. Captain

The highest rank in the tactical troops. It is indicated by NATO as two.

10. First Lieutenant  –

He is the deputy of the Captain. The immediate superior rank. NATO states it by one.

11. Second Lieutenant –

He is subordinate to the First Lieutenant but has the same NATO ranking.

Strengths of the Nigerian Army

The Nigerian army has a combat tank value which includes MBTS, tanks destroyers, light tanks. There is also Armour fighting vehicle values which includes APCs, IFVs, MRAPs, several armoured cars and missiles propellers.

  • ( Combat tanks= 252
  • ( Self propelled artillery= 25
  • ( Rocket projector = 30
  • ( Towed artillery= 338
  • ( Armoured fighting vehicles are present in its thousands.

Also among the strength of the Nigerian army is the man’s power, the man power in Nigeria’s army is as follows;

The Nigerian Amy has over 150,000 soldiers and 6,000 officers. Along with all the machinery in their possession, the Nigerian army is on its way to become a formidable armed force.

Functions of the Nigerian Army

The Nigerian army began in 1960 and has effects which sweeps across a the land area of Nigeria; controlling land related vices, terrorism and are responsible for ensuring peace and stability of a humans that are present on Nigeria’s land. So here are the well stated functions of the Nigerian army;

  • They help to support territorial wholesomeness
  • To protect the control against any form of external aggression
  • To safeguard the country’s borders
  • To maintain peace and orderliness in the country
  • To protect areas of utmost importance
  • To deliver basic defensive operations
  • To attain highly specialized skills in delivering moral duties

Nigerian Army Logo/Symbols Descriptions

Nigerian Army Logo

The Nigerian Army logo is one symbol that differentiates it from the air force or the navy. We shall explain the meaning of the eagle, the star sign and the meaning of the Arabic text writing just below the logo.

  • The eagle on the army logo signifies grace and power of the Nigerian army. Just like the way the eagle hovers above and attacks with precision, that’s how the army strikes Nigeria’s enemies when fighting a war.
  • The symbol of the star represents the unity of Nigeria as one indivisible nation. This could be traced back to 1914, during the amalgamation. The yellow and black colour on the star represents the Southern and Northern Protectorates that formed one Nigeria.
  • The Arabic writing in the Nigerian Army logo when transcribed in English means ‘Victory comes from God alone’.
  • The colour red on the flag stands for threat and enemy elements while the black represents the Nigerian cavalry and troops.

Nigerian Military Ranks

Nigerian Army

Military rank is more than just who salutes whom. Military rank is a badge of leadership. Responsibility for personnel, equipment, and mission grows with each increase in rank.

The rank system forms the backbone of the army’s structure and it defines a soldier or officer’s role and degree of responsibility. Soldiers and Officers have different rank systems.

Broadly speaking, officers have more leadership duties. However many Officers start off as soldiers, before gaining their commission.

Do not confuse rank with military appointment such as Commanders, Directors etc.

Military appointments are administrative classifications used primarily to standardize duties across the military services.

The army, for example, has the ranks of Brigadier General, Colonel etc, and then appointments as Commanders, Asistant Director Finance, Command Division Finance and Accounts etc.

A Colonel is expected to fill a leadership role as a Commander with a correpsonding higher military position than a fellow Colonel even though both receive the same amount of pay.

The official ranks in the Nigerian Army is based on two categories: The commissioned officers and the non-commissioned officers.

Top Branches of the Nigerian Army

There are 17 branches in the Nigerian army namely;

1. The Infantry:

This branch of the Nigerian army encompasses soldiers that come close enough to the enemy to fire and manoeuvre attacks, they engage in close attacks, counter attacks and repel enemy’s assault to defeat and capture them. They are the combat strength of the army

2. The Armour:

This branches is one of the active combat arm that make use of tanks and solider to support the infantry and Calvary and make forward strikes during mobile combat operation.

3. The Aviation:

This branch of the army that deals mainly with airstrike and their officers are mostly called air corps. The army aviation is concerned with mission to prompt and sustain combat conditions and usually comprises of helicopter and light weight aircrafts.

4. The Field artillery:

They are well-known as the boss of the war. They are the leader of the soldiers, they joined knowledge and technical expertise of all the Nigerian army weapon system to offer all type of fire power.

They are specialists within the capabilities of cannons, rockets, missiles, naval gunfire, and close air support.

5. Special corps:

This branch encompass all the highly specialized workforce that are involved accomplishing special warfare techniques. They coordinate several mission such as counterterrorism, strategic reconnaissance, foreign internal defence.

6. Air defence artillery:

Air Defence Artillery cut across all positions concerned with the employment of Air Defence Artillery weapons in support of military land combat operations and against enemy aircraft and missile attacks.

Depending on the type of missions, Air Defences Artillery units can be found defending the ground-rousing combat arms units or critical units/areas against enemy air attack.

7. Signal Corps:

Signal Corps officers blends along each combat leadership skills and technical effectiveness as they arrange and coordinate info systems that supports the command and management of the Army’s forces.

They also coordinate the installation, operations, maintenance and reconfiguration of the network of information systems for strategic, and sustaining base operations and the operation of the Army part of global defence communications systems.

8. Corps of engineers:

The Corps of Engineers is a Branch which also has combat support and service that support roles.

Engineer officers plan and make out the missions relating to engineer support on the battlefield in light, heavy, airborne, and topographic missions. They manage facilities and housing support at military base.

9. Chemical corps:

The Chemical Corps are concerned mostly on proper orientation toward operations, training, scientific development and acquisition activities in support of nuclear, biological, chemical and other natural defence scheme.

10. Transportation corps:

Transportation Corps encompasses those positions related to movement of officers and cargo through land, sea, and air

11. Medical corps:

The Medical Corps is part of the army medical department. This branch is an exclusive l branch of the Army. It comprises of three functional areas which are Clinical Medicine Staff, Command, and Research.

12. Veterinary corps:

The Veterinary Corps may be a a part of the military Medical Department. The Corps coordinates its activities to four areas: veterinary food inspection and hygiene, animal medical care, veterinary preventive medicine and research and development

13. Adjutant general corps:

Officers within the Adjutant General’s Corps serve in the least organization levels of the military wherever they arrange, develop, and use the Army’s personnel management support systems.

14. Chaplain corps:

The Chaplains Branch is a special branch which main mission is to offer comprehensive religious support for soldiers in war.

15. Judge advocate general corps:

The Judge Advocate General’s Corps is a unique branch of the army officers that are lawyers. Their functions include all legal practices like criminal law, administrative and civil law.

16. Military intelligence corps:

Military Intelligence encompasses the use and integration of military intelligence functions at both strategic levels.

Nigerian Army Ranks, Symbols and Badges

Here is the full list of the Nigerian Army ranks, symbols and descriptions. The list below is arranged from the lowest rank to the highest. Each of this rank and position is attached with the symbols that best describe them.

After this information, when you see any Nigerian Army by mere looking at their tag and symbol, you will definitely know his or her rank.

1. Lance corporal

Lance corporal is the lowest rank in the Nigerian Army, a soldier of this rank, ranks higher than a private (Privates are the newly recruited soldiers).

Nigerian Army Ranks

2. Corporal

This is second to the last in the hierarchy of Rank; the Corporal is the next rank that a Lance Corporal assumes upon promotion.


3.  Sargent

Sergeant is the fifteenth most powerful army in Nigeria.  The sergeant comes after Corporal in the order of Nigerian Army. And although it is senior to both a Lance Corporal and Corporal, a Sergeant in the Nigerian Army is still a junior non-commissioned officer.

Nigerian Army Ranks

To identify a Sergeant, look out for the “triple V” marked badge on the uniform above.

4. Staff Sergeant

Staff Sergeant is the fourteenth most powerful army in Nigeria. Staff Sergeant is next after Sergeant; but unlike the Sergeant, a Staff Sergeant is a superior non-commissioned officer in the Nigerian Army.

Staff Sergeant

Staff Sergeant can be identified by “a golden eagle above the triple V” marked badge on the uniform.

5. Warrant Officer

This officer is ranked thirteenth in the Nigerian Army. The warrant officer is the next in line of rank  rank after Staff Sergeant in the order  of Nigerian Army. It is thought to be a good rank for young military personnel.

Nigerian Army Ranks

A Warrant Officer can be identified by the “golden eagle surrounded by golden crown made of olive leaves” marked badge on the uniform.

6. Master warrant officer

The master warrant officer is ranked number twelve in the Nigerian army. It is also known as Master Sergeant, Master Warrant Officer is the highest non-commissioned rank in the Nigerian Army.

Master warrant officer

They are charged to deal with military equipment and can be identified by an insignia which has the Nigerian coat of arm.”

7. Second Lieutenant

The rank of the second lieutenant is eleven positions. Like the Lance Corporal, Second Lieutenant is the lowest rank in the hierarchy of commissioned officers.

The word as used ‘lieutenant’ means substitute and Second Lieutenant Means the second substitute of a Captain.

Nigerian Army Ranks

It is easy to identify them as the insignia designated to this rank is a single “six-pointed star”, the star seen in the Nigerian Army emblem.

8. First lieutenant

The first lieutenant is among the top ten most powerful army and next after the Second. And just as the Second Lieutenant is the second subordinate of a captain, the First Lieutenant the Captain’s first substitute.

Nigerian Army Ranks

You can differentiate a First Lieutenant from the second lieutenant by looking out for the “vertically aligned two six-pointed stars” marked badge on the uniform.

9. Captain

This is undoubtedly the most famous in the rank within the army as it is known by both the learned and unlearned. It is ranked number nine in the Nigerian Army.

First Lieutenant and Second Lieutenant are subordinate to the Captain.


The insignia of a Captain is made up of three six-pointed stars which are vertically aligned.

10. Major

In the order of the Nigerian Army, the rank of Major eight positions and it is next after the Captain. It is liken to the naval rank of lieutenant commander in the other uniformed services.


They can be identified by a “silver eagle” marked on the badge of their uniform.

11. Lieutenant Colonel

Lieutenant Colonel is one the most important ranks in the Nigerian Army, and it is ranking seventh most powerful in Nigerian Army.

Lieutenant Colonel

The insignia for this rank is made up of one silver eagle above a vertically aligned six-pointed star above.

12. Colonel 

Colonel is among the top sixth ranks in the Nigerian Army. And he plays crucial duty to be responsible for the regiment.


The insignia for Colonel is one silver eagle above a vertically aligned two six-pointed stars.

13. Brigadier

Brigadier is ranking fifth general officer in the Nigerian Amy. When the Brigadier is been appointed to a field command, he is typically in command of a brigade consisting of around 4,000 troops.


Liken to that of a Colonel, the insignia of a brigadier is made up of one silver eagle and six-pointed stars arranged in a triangular form.

14. Major general

Major General is the fourth powerful phase of ranks in the Nigerian Army.

Nigerian Army Ranks

As shown above, the symbol of Major General is made up of a golden eagle and a cross of sword and baton.

15. Lieutenant General 

The third in this category is the Lieutenant General. He is the third most powerful rank in the Nigerian Army.

Nigerian Army Ranks

Its symbol is composed of all elements making up the symbol of Major General, and a golden six-pointed star.

16. General 

This is the second largest after the field marshal and so far in Nigeria, it is  highest attained rank in the Nigerian Army.


The General is identified by a silver eagle, two golden six-pointed stars and a cross of sword and baton.

 17. Field Marshal

The field  marshal is another name for General of the Army, it is the highest and apex rank in the Nigerian Army but unfortunately, no personnel since the establishment  of the Nigerian Army, have ever reached up to this rank.

Field Marshal

As seen above, the insignia of Field Marshal is made up of a golden eagle and a cross of sword and baton surrounded by two branches.

How To Apply For Nigerian Army

  • Visit Nigerian Army’s web page at recruitment and choose your preferred course (SSC or DSSC) from the page.
  • You will be redirected to the page where you can read the qualification criteria for the ongoing SSC and DSSC courses.
  • Click on the “Apply Now” button for your chosen course (SSC or DSSC).
  • After which you will be required to select if you are serving/have served in the Armed Forces of Nigeria, choose the appropriate option and proceed.
  • If have not created an account click on “Sign Up”, after which a verification link will be sent to your email or enter you login details and log in.
  • Fill out the form and ensure all required documents listed below are uploaded:
  • Passport photograph.
  • Educational certificates.
  • Evidence of membership of any professional body.
  • Certificate of state of origin.
  • Birth certificate or age declaration.
  • For DSSC applicants, note that the qualification selections available to you are dependent on the preferred corps selected.
  • Applicants must print out their photo-slip which would be generated online on completion of their application. The first page is to be signed by the Registrar of any Court of Law while the second page is to be signed by the applicants’ Local Government Chairman/Secretary or any military officer of the rank of Lieutenant Colonel or equivalent and above who hails from an applicant’s state of origin.

Nigerian Army Salaries Structure:

The Nigerian army offers a very tangible amount of money as salary for those in their work force. The salary of the soldiers increases as they advance from one level to another.

Here are the monthly salary received by the army from the lowest to the highest level

Ranks Salary
Second Lieutenant- N120,000
Lieutenant N180,000
Captain N220,000
Major N300,000
Lt. Colonel N350,000
Colonel N550,000
Brigadier General N750,000
Major General N950,000
Lt. General N1 million
General N1.5 million
Ranks Salary
Corporal N58,000
Sergeant N63,000
Staff Sergeant N68,000
Warrant Officer N80,000
Master Warrant Officer N90,000

More Information:

on-Commissioned Officers  Salaries:
  • Master Warrant Officer – N90,000;
  • Warrant Officer – N80,000;
  • Staff Sergeant – N68,000;
  • Sergeant – N63,000; Corporal – N58,000;
  • Lance Corporal earns about N54,000-55,000;
  • Private Soldier earns about N48,000-49,000.
 Commissioned Officers Salaries:
  • General – N1.5 million;
  • Lieutenant General – N1 million;
  • Major General – N950,000;
  • Brigadier General- N750,000;
  • Colonel – N550,000;
  • Lieutenant Colonel – N350,000;
  • Major – N300,000;
  • Captain – N220,000;
  • Lieutenant – N180,000;
  • Second Lieutenant – N120,000.

 Division of the Nigerian Military:

The Nigerian military is endowed with the sole responsibility of protecting the citizens and sovereign territorial borders against external threats.

Codes Of Operation Includes:

  • Order
  • Hierarchy
  • Discipline

This means that the Nigerian armed forces is organized and abides by certain decrees and operates within a structural hierarchy.

The military are further divided into three branches:

  • Nigerian Army: This service branch is armed to maintain peace on land and is responsible for securing the lives of the people against internal and external threats.
  • Nigerian Navy: This is branch of the armed forces that operate and secure the nation’s waters against invaders. They also help in rescuing citizens who experience attack by sea.
  • Nigerian Air force: They offer air support and secure the country against threats or invaders by air. They also aid in transporting cargo/weapons and other missions on air.

Nigeria Military World Ranking:

Nigeria is ahead of Portugal, Belgium and Cuba in the world ranking and Egypt leads African military power followed closely by Algeria, South Africa and Nigeria.

A global military ranking institution, Global Fire Power (GFP), citing United States’ Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Fact book, said the country retains the first spot in global military strength.

The ranking is based on population of the country, manpower/personnel strength, financial strength and military arsenal.

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  1. suleman abdullahi February 21, 2021
  2. Umar yahya May 9, 2021

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