- Buratai calls for synergy as Egypt trains army aviation personnel
Kingsley Nwezeh in Abuja
Following the growing threat of terrorism in the continent, African military chiefs are to meet to fashion ways of tackling the menance.
This is coming as the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Tukur Buratai, has disclosed that as part of the strategies to float an army aviation department to complement troops in the fight against insurgency, army personnel are presently undergoing training in Egypt.
Apart from the ongoing war against insurgency in Nigeria, other African countries have also come under attack by terrorists, who killed 25 soldiers in Niger Republic last week while other similar attacks have taken place in Mali, Burkina Faso and Chad.
The last meeting of African military chiefs that held in Malawi last year dwelt on improving military/civilian relationship in communities.
Speaking while receiving the Ambassador of Arab Republic of Egypt to Nigeria, His Excellency Assem Elseify, who paid a courtesy visit to the Army Headquarters in Abuja, Buratai said the year 2020 meeting of military chiefs of the CEN-SAD (Community of Sahel and Saharan States) would deliberate on the growing threat of terrorism in Africa and modern measures to tackle it.
He said Nigeria would attend the event scheduled for Cairo, Egypt.
Buratai said though the Nigerian Army has degraded terrorists and other emerging security threats in the North Eastern part of the country, including Lake Chad region, security of other African countries should also be considered.
“Nigeria and Egypt has consistently had wonderful relations. We both have diplomatic missions in our countries. For the military we have exchange of defence attaches.
“We have enjoyed reciprocated military training between Nigeria and Egyptian military. We have trained in Egyptian Defence College. We are currently receiving some air tactical training for our aviation personnel as well as specialised training in renowned Egyptian military medical institutions”, he said.
Buratai said “this is because Egypt has the most powerful military in Africa and we have a lot to learn from them especially in the area of counter insurgency”.
Buratai said Egypt being the most powerful military in the continent, and having playing a leading role in the counter terrorism in the Sahel region and Nigeria being a member of the CEN-SAD, the community of Sahel and Saharan states which is working to have an African Standby Force, it became necessary for the both countries to work together to better enhance the military operations in the continent.
The Army chief said “the year 2020 meeting of military chiefs of the CEN-SAD which will deliberate on the growing threat of terrorism in Africa and modern measures to tackle it, will be held in Cairo, Egypt and Nigeria will send a delegation”.
Earlier, Ambassador Assem Elseify told the Chief of Army Staff that he was at Army headquarters to further promote the military relations between Egypt and Nigeria.
He said the visit was to find ways of creating and strengthening the relationship with Nigeria in critical areas of security and national development.
He said Egypt was committed to identifying and agreeing on possible areas to promote military relations and cooperation with Nigeria.