Cutting Cost: Buhari hands over 2 presidential helicopters to Air Force

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday ordered the release of two Augusta AW 101, VVIP helicopters from the Presidential Air Fleet (PAF) to the Nigerian Air Force (NAF)

The National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, who presented the helicopters to the Air Force, said the gesture was in fulfillment of the President’s promise to reduce the cost of the amount expended on the PAF .

Mr. Monguno, a retired major general, said that in line with this philosophy, two aircraft – 1x AW109 helicopter and 1x King Air Beechcraft – had earlier been released to the NAF in 2015, immediately the president took over.

He said it was given out in realisation of the need to immediately enhance the capacity of the armed forces in its campaign against insurgency.

He said that the president had also given approval for the sale of one of the 2x Falcons 7x and the Hawker 4000 aircraft operated by the fleet.

The NSA also said that a committee for the sale of both aircraft was already sitting and would soon complete its assignment.

“AW 101 is a highly versatile helicopter used in both VIP civil and military applications.

“These two helicopters handed to the NAF today have ballistic defence capabilities and are equipped with defensive aid suites against certain forms of missile attacks.

“Mr president appreciated the need to enhance the airlift capacity of NAF to strengthen the efforts of the ongoing campaign against insurgency in different parts of the country.

“This is compatible with his philosophy to reduce the cost of governance and enhance capacity of our armed forces,” Mr. Monguno said.

Responding, the Chief of Air Staff, Sadique Abubakar, said the gesture had encouraged NAF to focus on the fight against insurgency in the North-East and militancy.

Mr. Abubakar, an air vice marshal, said that the 2x Augusta Westland 101 helicopters were executive helicopters designed for the transportation of VIPs and equipped with ballistic defence capabilities and defensive aid suites.

“Like the two aircraft earlier handed to us, we intend to reconfigure these helicopters and deploy them for tactical airlift of troops and logistics in support of combat operations.

“Incidentally, the acceptance of these helicopters and the intended reconfiguration efforts are in line with two drivers of my vision.

“These provides for robust logistics support and maintenance culture to sustain platforms /equipments service as well as reinforcement of the culture of self-reliance and prudent management of resources,” he said.

Mr. Abubakar thanked the president for his support to NAF, adding that the use of the helicopters would be justified.

The Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, said that the handing over of the aircraft would augment NAF’s aircraft inventory, boost its air power capability and consolidate in the realisation of its vision.

Mr. Dan-Ali said the vision would help to reposition NAF into a highly professional and disciplined force through capacity building initiative for effective, efficient and timely employment of power in response to security.

He expressed optimism that with the addition of the two helicopters, more accomplishments would be achieved to decisively win the war against terrorism, insurgency and other forms of criminalities.

(NAN)


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  • wode

    The CHANGE is real! Let it continue.

    • Full blooded Nigerian

      And let us support it too

      • Burbank

        Yes-so

    • Ola

      Yes please let’s all support it. 4 helicopters in all in just over a year. 2 planes put on sale.
      Its a good sign that Buhari is willing to at least cut the cost he is empowered to!

      • abodes_124

        when the committee set up for the sale have empanelled let us know. when they have reached adecision let us know. when they have affected a sale let us know and how much and where the money has gone to. our rejoicing will be full then. Still 8 jets left. one for each day of the week why not please sell the extra 8th one.

      • Burbank

        Agreed.

    • Iskacountryman

      buhari is an unserious man…

  • Taiwo

    Publicity stunt. No economic policy in place. We have the national assembly and 36 states with their own lawmakers on full time drawing salaries. I thought this should be his focus.

    • TRUTH MASTER

      No government in Nigeria has even done this. That in itself is momentous. Even if you term it ‘publicity stunt’, that does not detract from its symbolism. I am impressed with the Buhari-led FG. Change is indeed here, and it begins with each and everyone of us

      • abodes_124

        Check what the President of Malawi did. google or do you want me to find it for you ?

        • TRUTH MASTER

          Did you go to school? I said no government in Nigeria has ever done something and you are talking of Malawi. Is Malawi a state in Nigeria?

    • Iyanda

      I thought so too but the constitution does not permit the president to alter the salaries of federal law makers lest the state law makers.
      Nigerians should take this up by facing the national Assembly head on.

      • abodes_124

        How Sir can @Nigerians’ do this practically and effectively?

  • Full blooded Nigerian

    I would suggest putting these aircraft to commercial use. Give them to Arik or Aero to manage. They would come in handy for our elites who prefer air travels. And the operators can charge good premium on them. This would cover cost of maintenance and also bring something to government’s coffers.

    • Rommel

      I am in full agreement with you

      • emmanuel

        You have only told us that Buharis level of intellect is low. You have imagined why a luxurious helicopter be doing with fighters? – It is hypocritical.
        The Airforce said they would configure both; as what Air-passenger copters or gunship. In the latter, it could cost close to the cost of buying a new one to configure as gun ship.
        This is where Ben Bruce – common sense comes in.

      • abodes_124

        Ditto

  • abodes_124

    I thought the Presidential air fleet was under the arm of the air force and the pilots were air force officers? Is he giving them back what already belongs to them so that he has continuing use. Please stop dribbling us.

    • BABUYANMA

      Presidential Fleet is different from the Air Force Fleet. You know the truth.

      • abodes_124

        I know it is different but I presumed that like the American presidents plane [Air Force1] it was manned by the air force and was technically part of the Air force. It is more of a question than a statement.

        • BABUYANMA

          In America, the president’ airplanes are not part of the Air Force Fleet. Please lets be honest, and move Nigeria forward. I have been living in America for over 30 years

          • abodes_124

            30 years wow… do try and be better informed about the country you live in. Read below:
            ‘Air Force One is the official air traffic control call sign for a United States Air Force aircraft carrying the President of the United States. In common parlance the term refers to those Air Force aircraft specifically designed, built, and used for the purpose of transporting the president. The presidential aircraft is a prominent symbol of the American presidency and its power.
            The idea of designating specific military aircraft to transport the President arose in 1943, when officials of the United States Army Air Forces, the predecessor to the U.S. Air Force, became concerned with relying on commercial airlines to transport the president’

          • BABUYANMA

            You Ibolas read books upside down. Read your own statement, and tell the world where it says Airforce One is part of US Airforce. You are ignorant bunch of people, and the tragedy is that you fail to acknowledge your limitation.
            Buhari is doing GREAT allowing his helicopters to be go to the Nigerian Airforce.

          • abodes_124

            Of course Buhari is doing great.
            You are not doing too well yourself. you must not try to run naked into the market place.

          • BABUYANMA

            I can’t run naked to the market place bcos I am not an Ibola

          • abodes_124

            too late my friend. too late.

  • front man

    God bless Nigeria
    God bless pmb

    • Burbank

      Amen

  • front man

    It is high time good people of give there full support to president muhammadu buhari
    God bless Nigeria

    • emmanuel

      Forget the show made of this helicopter handover.
      Hear the real story and you would be ashamed that the Presidents own men held him hostage on the Prssidential Jet saga.
      It is actually a scandal of so much money requested for annual maintenance, the man was shocked and the best option was to sell. But what ten was to be sold for according to the cabal, was less than the cost of annual maintenance, so they ended maintaining all.
      I suspect the handover was a self-righteous act, to save face after the huge propaganda of reducing presidential jet fleet.
      What stinks around is worse than what the PDP left with. Meanwhile, the one who made the PDP a nest of robbers (head of the then looters, ballot box snatchers, womanisers, kickbac specialists, and highest records of assisination in governance) is now the special adviser to Buhari – Obasabjo

      • BABUYANMA

        Retarded Ibo. We are taking our country back from you SABOTEURS

        • emmanuel

          I would rather deal with very intelligent retards with high intelligent quotient, than have a dullard lead and some scoundrels like you sing his praise.
          You have taken on more than a thousand monikers since you arrive this forum, which is grave and typifies cheap integrity of the present day Nigeria leadership.
          Burutai, Dambazzau issues swept under, Aisha Buhari in Halliburton scandal swept under. Do you imagine that some of us had contemporaries, family and friends in the then halliburton Nigeria?
          You can deceive people, but cannot deceive all; all the time.

          • BABUYANMA

            You are a SABOTEUR. Worthless garbage.

    • Burbank

      God bless Buhari

  • BABUYANMA

    Useless Otuoke jonathan surely knew how to waste money

    • abodes_124

      And useful GMB has been following in his footsteps for the past 17 months.

      • BABUYANMA

        Sai Buhari