By Chiemelie Ezeobi
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has once again boosted the welfare of its personnel with the provision of a 30 by one airmen and airwomen transit studio apartments at Communications Depot, Shasha, Lagos.
At the inauguration, the Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, said it is a testimony of the pledge he made upon assumption of office in July 2015.
He said: “Then, I resolved to improve on the welfare needs of NAF personnel, as that is a major requirement in the development of human capacity for enhanced operational performance.
“You would bear me witness that while the service is being restructured for efficient service delivery in the last five years, there have also been series of infrastructural developments aimed at improving both the working and living conditions of our personnel.
“These infrastructural developments range from the construction of new office and living accommodation in all the NAF Bases across the country. I am happy we have kept faith and we still intend to do more to ensure that Nigerian Air Force personnel work in a conducive atmosphere and they
and their families live in befitting accommodation.
“I however urge beneficiaries of this gesture to use the facilities with utmost responsibility and appropriate maintenance culture.
“It is imperative to remind our personnel across the service that to whom much is given, much more is expected”. Much resource is being expended to improve personnel welfare, motivation and professionalism.
“However, we must do our best to justify this enormous defence expenditure in the face of dwindling resources in the economy. In particular, you have a responsibility to ensure adequate and sustained maintenance of the infrastructure at your disposal.
“As a service, we must also strive to continuously meet and even exceed expectations of the nation by protecting the citizenry and our critical assets as well as bringing succor to the despaired as we discharge our constitutional responsibilities to the nation.”
Afterwards in an interview, the CAS, who was represented by the Chief of Policy and Planning, Air Vice Marshall Isiaka Oladayo Amao, also charged the base to ensure maintenance of the accommodation.
He said: “That’s what I mentioned in my speech earlier on that it’s the duty of the commandant to ensure that these things are maintained.
“The resources are provided for maintenance of this accommodation at all times by the headquarters Nigeria Air Force so the commander has the responsibility to ensure that these facilities are well maintained at all times.”
On the need to phase out old structures from the base he said it’s an ongoing process that would soon stretch to all bases.
”I’m sure if you had been here before, those are the kind of structures that were here before they were transformed to these bigger structures. So it’s a gradual and continuous process.“
Earlier in his welcome address, the Commander 041 Communication Depot, Shasha, Air Commodore Nkem Aguiyi, commended the CAS for his deliberate actions in infrastructural development across all commands.
He said, “In the past five years of this current leadership, the Nigeria Air Force has witnessed unprecedented infrastructural development in NAF establishments in different parts of the country.
“There has been phenomenal improvement in operational stability along with corresponding action but necessary support structures.
“Like many other units and bases across the country, 041 Communications Depot, Shasha has benefitted immensely.”
Going down memory lane, he said the CAS has commissioned several projects in Shasha, which is a proof of his determination to rapidly develop infrastructure in the force with a view to improving personnel welfare towards enhanced service delivery.
Pix caption: NAF personnel at the inauguration of the transit studio apartments at Communications Depot, Shasha, Lagos