By Amos Tauna,
Kaduna (Nigeria) – Determined to enhance and sustain the process of building capacity to effectively prosecute the counter insurgency – operations in the North East and other forms of criminality in the country, the Nigerian government has procured new Super Mushshak aircraft.
The new aircraft, five in number, form the final batch of a total of 10 Super Mushshak aircraft procured by the present administration initiated in the year 2016.
Air Vice Marshal Olatokunbo Adesanya, Director of Public Relations and Information, Nigerian Air Force, in a statement said the Air Force had taken delivery of the second batch of Super Mushshak trainer aircraft ordered from Pakistan.
The statement explained that the Chief of Logistics at NAF Headquarters, Air Vice Marshal Bello Garba, received the new aircraft on behalf of the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, stressing that a combined team of NAF and Pakistan Air Force, PAF, personnel were also on hand to assist in offloading the new aircraft and some parts which came in crates.
In addition, the statement said , officials of the Nigerian Customs Service and the Nigerian Immigration Service were present to ensure necessary documentation. “The newly delivered aircraft, which are capable of being used for acrobatics training, are all brand new and fitted with digital glass cockpit,” it noted.
“As at 2015, local primary flying training in the NAF was almost grounded thereby necessitating the procurement of the Super Mushshak Aircraft.
“Consequently, with the delivery of the new Super Mushshak aircraft, primary flying training of NAF pilots at 401 Flying Training School, FTS, Kaduna has just received a boost,” the statement observed.
The NAF took delivery of the first batch of 5 brand new Super Mushshak Aircraft on 14 July 2017, following which the aircraft were inducted and deployed for primary training of NAF pilots.
Following the arrival of the new Super Mushshak aircraft in July last year, some NAF personnel had undergone training in Pakistan, as Instructor Pilots and technicians on the Super Mushshak aircraft, as part of the contract.
The statement noted that the delivery went without any hitch and the Ilyushin 76 Aircraft has departed from Nigeria.
“The newly received aircraft will now be assembled in Nigeria by a team of PAF and NAF technicians prior to test flying and formal induction into the NAF,” the statement explained.