Insecurity: NAF gets two more Agusta Helicopters
By our correspondent
The Nigerian Air Force said has taken delivery of the second batch of two new Agusta Westland 109 Power Attack Helicopters procured by the Federal Government in its efforts to support the ongoing war against insurgency and bandits in the country
The two helicopters, along with associated equipment and spares, arrived Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport Abuja aboard a Boeing 737-400 Cargolux Airline aircraft from Malpensa International Airport in Italy on 15 January 2020, the Air Force spokesman, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, in a statement, said.
According to the statement, they were received by a NAF team, led by Air Commodore Halim Adebowale, as well as the Country Representative of Leonardo Helicopters, manufacturers of the aircraft.
He said NAF engineers and technicians, in collaboration with a team from Leonardo, have started assembling the helicopters preparatory to their induction into service.
The NAF had earlier received the first batch of two new Agusta 109 Power Helicopters that were inducted into the Service on 29 April 2019 during the 55th NAF Day Celebration in Abuja.
The statement added that the Service, within the last 5 years, had taken delivery of 21 brand new aircraft, including 10 Super Mushshak, 5 Mi-35M Helicopter Gunships, 2 Bell 412 Helicopters and 4 Agusta 109 Power Helicopters.
The statement continued: “Beside these, 15 additional aircraft have been ordered by the Federal Government, which include 12 Super Tucano attack aircraft and 3 JF-17 Thunder multi-role fighter aircraft.
“The Service also took over 11 aircraft from other MDAs. These include 3 EC-135 helicopters and 3 Dauphin helicopters from NNPC, 3 Donier 228 aircraft and 2 Agusta 101 from the Presidential Air Fleet (PAF); making an unprecedented total of 47 aircraft that have either been inducted into the NAF or ordered for the Service since 2015.”
He also said over 20 previously grounded aircraft have been reactivated within the past 5 years, adding that, after induction, the two new helicopters will be deployed to theatres of operation across the country to reinforce NAF capability in the fight against insurgency and other forms of criminality.