â€¢ NAF deploys fighter jet pilots to combat operations
Paul Obi in Abuja
Military troops on TuesdayÂ killed a group of suspected Boko Haram terroristsâ€™ mercenaries of Mamman Nur extraction when they dared to attack 81 Division Task Force Battalionâ€™s location at Gulumba Gana in Bama Local Government Area of Borno State.
According to the Director of Army Public Relations, Brig Gen. Sani Usman, â€œthe troops successfully dealt with the terrorists and pursued those that escaped and recovered two AK-47 rifles and two magazines of nine round of ammunition, two AGL bombs, several empty cases of Shilka gunÂ Â ammunition, AGL bomb and one damaged mobile phone handset.
â€œSimilarly troops of 3 Battalion located at Logomani, Dikwa Local Government Area, Borno State, neutralised three Boko Haram, captured one alive and recovered three AK-47 rifles from Mamman Nur faction that dared to attack their location yesterday at about 7p.m. However, we lost a soldier during the pursuit,â€ Usman stated.
Meanwhile, in furtherance of the human capacity building initiative of the present leadership of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF), two combat pilots were â€˜wingedâ€™ today, 4 July 4, 2017 after successfully completing an 18-month Specialised Undergraduate Pilot Training at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas in the United States of America.
Air Force Director of Public Relations and Information, Air Commodore Olatokunbo Adesanya explained that â€œthe two newly â€˜wingedâ€™ pilots, both of the rank of Flying Officer, went through the primary and fighter jet training during which they amassed over 100 flying hours each on the T-6 Texan ii and T-38 Talon aircraft types.
â€œThe two officers had earlier undergone an introductory flying training at the US Aviation Academy in Denton, where they flew the Cessna 172 aircraft. They will now be deployed to NAF combat units for tactical training on fighter jets.â€
Speaking, the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, reiterated that the NAF would not relent in its efforts at human capacity building, noting that the Service cannot function optimally without appropriate personnel training.
The CAS further stated that the NAF was already reaping from its huge investment in human capacity building, as reflected in the several NAF aircraft that had been successfully reactivated, with attendant effect on operational efficiency.
Abubakar stated: â€œOnly the right training can enable personnel deal with the complex security challenges facing the country. We will therefore continue to build human capacity while also ensuring that our humanitarian intervention schemes are going on.â€
He congratulated the new pilots and urged them to quickly settle down and join the rest of their colleagues in defending the territorial integrity of the nation.