As part of the armed forces frantic efforts to defeat Boko Haram and terrorism scourge as a whole, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has created a Special Forces command to boost up its operations in the North-East and other internal security operations across the country.
This was made known on Thursday by the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, while delivering a lecture to participants of course 24, at the National Defence College, Abuja, titled: “Nigerian Air Force: Challenges and Future Perspectives”.
Full details of the new establishment were however, not made known by Mr. Abubakar, but he mentioned that it was part of the planned restructuring of NAF’s operational command to conform with contemporary security demands in the country.
“The Air Force is not only fighting in the air, and therefore, whatever it is that we need to have to fulfill our mandate in the face of the present challenges is what we are working toward putting on the ground.
“We are establishing a new command known as the Special Forces Command as part of ongoing restructuring of our operations.
“The establishment of the Special Forces Command would facilitate the development of NAF’s response capability in both internal and external security operations, as well as increase Nigeria’s self-reliance in strategic security operations,” he said.
He revealed that NAF had upgraded its combat units and established new ones to aid its combat operations all over the country, announcing the establishment of a Base Defence Coordination Centre which he said will become operational by the end of Jan. 2016.
“The Nigerian Air Force has taken some policy decisions to enhance our operational capabilities some of which include the upgrade of units and establishment of new ones.
“Among the upgraded units are the 305 helicopter group and 95 helicopter combat unit.
“The new ones include the establishment of the 89 Combat Group to be located in Bauchi to aid combat operations with air logistics in the North-East,” Abubakar said.
Mr. Abubakar said warfare in the Nigerian Air Force would be dictated by advancement in technology and appropriate manpower development.
He also said the present administration had improved its operational capability with additional platforms despite the scarce resources and other challenges affecting the NAF’s operations in recent years.