President Bola Tinubu has authorized the payment for the acquisition of 12 attack helicopters for the Nigerian Army. Lt.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, the Chief of Army Staff, made this announcement during the inaugural Nigerian Army Aviation Seminar in Abuja on Tuesday.
He revealed that these 12 MD 530F Cayuse attack helicopters will operationalize the Nigerian army aviation unit, enhancing the agility, responsiveness, and effectiveness of ground troops during operations.
Additionally, this development is expected to contribute to the overall operational success of joint and coalition troops. Lagbaja clarified that the army aviation unit is distinct from a nation’s dedicated air force but typically comprises helicopters and light support fixed-wing aircraft.
He expressed gratitude to the president for supporting the Nigerian army’s aspiration to establish a well-equipped aviation unit, which will aid ground troops in their tactical and operational endeavors.
He also cited the experiences of nations like the United States, Pakistan, Colombia, Egypt, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda as informative examples in this context.
“The army aviation arms of these countries have shown effectiveness in countering contemporary security threats and providing vital support to ground forces.
“In view of the need to realize this, and in its bid to appropriately respond to contemporary and emerging security threats, the Nigerian Army resuscitated its aviation aspiration in 2014.
“I am happy to inform this gathering that the Nigerian army is willing to learn from the army aviation journeys of the countries mentioned earlier.
“Our willingness to learn from them is to adapt their best practices to suit our unique operational environment and avoid their mistakes.
“I can proudly report that since 2014, the Nigerian Army has made commendable progress in training pilots, aircraft engineers, technicians, and other ground support crew,” he said.
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