By Mohammed Tijjani
Kaduna, Oct. 23, 2020 (NAN) The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, says the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has trained no fewer than 4,000 personnel in five years to meet up with its specialised needs.
Abubakar stated this at the graduation of the 86 Defence Intelligence Agency Weapon Handling Course 1 participants, held at the Regiment Training Center (RTC ), on Friday in Kaduna.
He explained that the initiative had ensured that the nation’s bases were secured and provided necessary platform to guarantee various missions’ successes.
“Realising the need to have personnel with specialised training to meet specialised needs in force protection, the NAF subsequently trained over 4,000 personnel both overseas and locally, to build up capacity in this regard.
”From the moment my administration commencement, I desired to transform the NAF into to a highly professional and disciplined force, through capacity building initiatives for effective, efficient and timely employment of airpower in response to our national security imperatives.
”One of my key drivers of this vision hinges on human capacity development for improved professional performance,” he said.
The Air Chief, who was represented by Chief of Training and Operation, AVM James Gwani, described professional weapon handling as the basis and hallmark of military and security agencies, irrespective of the nature of the task.
He adding that the Defence Intelligence Agency Weapon Handling Training is the first of its kind to hold at the RTC in Kaduna.
The air chief further noted that the NAF has increased the number of personnel recruited into its fold, while building up the capability of its regiment.
According to him, in the spirit of brotherhood and ensuring synergy with sister services, the NAF has added to its list, a number of agencies benefiting from inter service cooperation.
He said this was achieved by training the 86 Defence Intelligence Agency personnel in weapon handling.
”The successful completion of training of these 86 personnel of the Defence Intelligence Agency, attests to synergy between security agencies in the fight against terrorism and insurgency.
“For the students of the Defence Intelligence Agency Weapon Handling training, as you are all aware, the course you just concluded was very demanding, both physically and mentally, as well as was mission tailored, in order to prepare you for the challenges ahead.
“This knowledge and capability is essential in the protection of national and vital interests, assets, resources, citizens, constitution and territory, which is the primary responsibility of all security forces,” Abubakar stated.
According to him, in all phases of warfare, sound and timely intelligence is key to success and boost the morale of fighting force or those on intelligence gathering mission.
Abubakar lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for his support at ensuring that the Nigerian Air Force was better equipped to fulfill its statutory responsibilities.
He said the support provided by the Federal Government had no doubt, positively impacted on the NAF, especially in the areas of training, operational efficiency, welfare and other services.
The air chief assured the President of their unalloyed loyalty and commitment to continue supporting government in its policy thrust of providing security, improving the economy and fighting corruption.
Earlier, the Commandant of RTC, Group Capt. Daniel Komo, said the 86 participants had undergone a four-week weapon handling training in the center.
Komo said the course was aimed at tutoring and improving the students’ general safety on use of variety of small arms, possible stoppages and immediate actions.
“This combined training of members of the Armed Forces and Intelligence Agency personnel, will enhance synergy between both services and other security agencies in the fight against insurgency,” he said.
According to him, the granduands have undergone series of trainings to enhance their operational capability, including
credible intelligence gathering.
Komo said the training was a testament to the leadership of the Chief of the Air Staff, who had always advocated inter service cooperation and synergy for enhanced operations.
NAN reports that the 86 graduands comprised 21 from the Army, 4 Navy personnel, one from the Air Force and 60 DIA personnel.
By Mohammed Tijjani