President Muhammadu Buhari has stated that his administration will remain unyielding in confronting the Boko Haram insurgency as well as other forms of criminality that have bedevilled the country.
The president said this on Thursday at the induction and commissioning ceremony on the newly acquired NAF MI-171E helicopter and two reactivated alpha jets and one L39ZA aircraft, all belonging to the Nigerian Air Force.
A statement issued by the Senior Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, quoted Buhari as saying, “On our part, we will continue to support you in any way we can to help you become more effective in the execution of your mandate for the safety and security of our country.”
The president also noted that his administration had boosted the capacity of the Nigerian Air Force by 23 brand new aircraft in recent times with more still on the way.
In his words: “Today’s induction brings to 23 the number of brand new aircraft that have been added to the inventory of the Nigerian Air Force since we came on board in 2015 and is a clear reflection of our unflinching commitment to ensuring the security of Nigeria and Nigerians.
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“These 23 new aircraft are aside the 15 additional aircraft, including 12 Super Tucano aircraft from the United States of America and 3 JF-17 Thunder Multi-Role Fighter aircraft from Pakistan that have been procured and will soon be delivered.”
Shehu said Buhari also noted that the gestures were besides other supports towards reactivating over 25 erstwhile unserviceable aircraft “significantly boosting the capacity of the Service to deliver robust air power in support of our counter terrorism and counter insurgency efforts.”
He also said Buhari disclosed that he had also released two Agusta 101 helicopters from the presidential air fleet to the Nigerian Air Force to improve its tactical lift capability.
On his part, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, assured the president of the “unalloyed loyalty of the Nigerian Air Force and readiness to relentlessly work for the protection of our country.”