Reps pass vote of confidence on Chief of Air Staff, Abubakar, on war against insurgency
The House of Representatives, on Tuesday, showered encomium on Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, for the mechanisms being put in place to combat crime across the country.
Chairman, House Committee on Air Force, Hon Shehu Koko, gave the commendation in Abuja, during an oversight function to the Nigerian Air Force headquarters.
Hon Koko (APC-Kebbi) who commended the Air Force for doing so much in the areas of capacity building, weapon development and research, pledged commitment necessary support that will give muzzle to the Air Force to enable it to succeed in the fight against crime.
“We are here on an assessment visit just to ascertain the level of work done by the Force and to commend the Nigeria Air Force for judiciously utilizing the funds available to them.
“We have visited Borno, Makurdi, Kaduna etc, and we have seen what you have done. Therefore, the Committee promise to give you all the muzzle that you need to make you succeed.”
Other lawmakers, who spoke during the exercise, commended the leadership role of the Chief of Air Staff based on the committee’s assessment of some of its projects executed so far as observed during oversight in various states of the federation.
“I’m here today because I have been in the field, if I was not I would not say what I’m about to say. First and foremost, Nigerians might not see what you are doing but you have done a lot.
“We commend you for your capacity building. That is walking the talk. Some of your men that I had cause to interview personally, told me in confidence that there’s job satisfaction.
“Thanks for making sure that you have enough equipment. Though you might not be 100 per cent but you are doing very well. You have also anchored the research and development very well. Your civil-military collaboration is also commendable.
“And lastly, we in the House of Representatives commend you for training female pilots although we lost one of them and may her soul rest in peace,” Hon Benjamin Kalu noted.
In his remarks, the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Abubakar, who acknowledged the Committee’s support towards achieving the feats over the past five years, solicited for increased funding through annual budgetary provisions to enable Force to meet up with some certain obligations.
“I thank you more sincerely for all your support. All that we have achieved is based on the support you have given us. However, I will want to appeal that when the commandant of Kaduna appears before your committee, please do not hesitate to assist the school because our school is lacking hostels,” he urged.
While stressing the need for improved capacity building and gender balance in the Force, Air Marshal Abubakar disclosed that the Force has trained 7 female pilots while 14 females are still undergoing training, adding that a total of 118 pilots have been trained in the last five years.
He also disclosed that the Air Force has increased its aircraft fleet from three to 15 during the period under review.