• Commissions housing, welfare projects for troops
The Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, yesterday visited Yola, Adamawa State and Maiduguri, Borno State to celebrate the Eid-el-Kabir, in line with his tradition of spending festive periods with the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) troops on the frontline.
The CAS, who was accompanied by some senior officers from NAF headquarters, also used the visit to commission some projects in Yola. The visit to Yola started with the commissioning of two newly constructed and furnished blocks of 12 units of one-bedroom single officers’ quarters, executed by NAF headquarters, as well as a leisure park at the 163 NAF Hospital, executed by the commander of the hospital.
While speaking at the event, the CAS remarked that the various welfare-related projects executed in NAF bases across the country were initiated to provide conducive work and living environment to enable personnel focus on the onerous task of securing the country and its citizens.
“My desire is to see all personnel adequately quartered not only here in Yola, but all over NAF units across the country. However, your peculiarity, in view of your unassailable contributions as a frontline unit in the ongoing fight against insurgency, demands extra attention from me,” he said.
Speaking further, Abubakar reminded the personnel to remain apolitical and exhibit the highest level of professionalism, while showing absolute respect for the rights and privileges of citizens.
Speaking earlier, the ATF Commander, Air Commodore James Gwani, stated that the consistent presence of the CAS in the LAFIYA DOLE Theatre was a huge source of motivation to the personnel that would spur them to greater performance.
The Commander 153 Base Services Group, Air Commodore Anthony Ndace, in his welcome address, also thanked the CAS for making out time to felicitate with NAF frontline troops, noting that the gesture would continue to reassure the personnel that their welfare was of paramount importance to the leadership of the NAF.
The CAS and his team then joined the personnel for the Sallah luncheon where he expressed delight over the seating arrangement that ensured there was no high table, thus enabling personnel to freely interact with senior officers.
The CAS, along with other senior officers, later proceeded to Maiduguri where the ATF Commander briefed them on status of air operations in the LAFIYA DOLE Theatre; after which the CAS addressed the troops. During the address, Air Marshal Abubakar commended the troops for their commitment, while conveying the Commander-in-Chief’s appreciation for the excellent job the ATF was doing.
He stated that the successes in the fight against insurgency in the past three years had enabled persons who had been displaced from their communities for several years to safely return to their ancestral homes.
Abubakar then commissioned housing and park projects for troops fighting Boko Haram insurgency in the northeast region. The accommodation and leisure projects, were to provide conducive working and living environment to conclude “aerial and ground” counter-insurgency military operations.