Buhari Set To Launch Tucanos One Month After Delivery Amid Bandits, Terrorists’ Attacks

August 25, 2021
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President Muhammadu Buhari will launch six freshly purchased A-29 Super Tucanos on Tuesday, August 31.

Buhari will preside over the ceremony as the Special Guest of Honour, according to the Nigerian Air Force (NAF).

The event will take place at the Presidential Air Fleet Apron at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja at 10 a.m.

On July 22, the first of the twelve A-29 Super Tucano aircraft ordered from America arrived in Kano.

Major General Bashir Magashi (rtd), Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Faruk Yahaya, and Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao, welcomed them.

Buhari’s induction would take place five weeks after the fighter planes arrived in the country for unexplained reasons.

Nigerians are accustomed to waiting for government authorities to commission infrastructure, projects, and equipment before using them.

Military assets intended to subdue enemies are dispatched to the battlefield quickly in other countries.

In an interview with DAILY POST, NAF Director of Information Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet explained the delay.

According to the spokesman, induction ceremonies do not have a time limit, and other combat jets provide air support during operations.

“The induction is ceremonial, it’s symbolic. It’s not as if we lack have other platforms to use. We feel this is the right time and it is only appropriate for Mr. President to do it”, Gabkwet explained.

However, critics claim that the Tucanos are awaiting launch while robbers and terrorists continue to kill, kidnap, and harm citizens in Nigeria.

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), in an interview with DAILY POST, chastised the presidency for the lengthy deployment.

Bayo Oladeji, the spokesman to CAN Chairman, Samson Ayokunle, said the situation buttressed their position that the Buhari administration payslips to service insecurity.

“They act less than their speeches. If Super Tucano aircraft were purchased to fight the terrorists while waiting for days to commission them?

“Terrorists are everywhere operating in the whole North. Boko Haram, ISWAP in the North-East, bandits in the North-West and killer herdsmen in the North-Central.

“They also make their ways to the South once a while. CAN has consistently asked President Muhammadu Buhari to break the monopoly of the security architecture in vain.

“The results are before us today when these terrorists are finding their way to the prestigious Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA).

“They are bringing down our fighting aircraft, abducting people, including students in their hundreds. Yet those caught or surrender are being recycled in the name of deradicalisation and rehabilitation”, he said.

Oladeji went on to say that the Christian leadership has been imploring God for supernatural intervention as a result of the federal government’s failure.

The NDA in Kaduna, a protected military installation, was breached in an audacious manner on Tuesday.

In the middle of the night, a big group of bandits invaded the Afaka campus’s residential area.

Lieutenant Commander Wulah and Flight Lieutenant CM Okoronkwo were killed, and second Lieutenant Onah was wounded by gunfire.

Major Christopher Datong was kidnapped, and stories on his life and death are conflicting.

The NDA stated it is working with the Nigerian Army’s 1st Division, the Air Training Command, and other security organizations to find the killers.

Before the end of 2021, the second batch of six A-29 Super Tucano will be delivered. The US-Nigeria agreement is the world’s largest defense sale to an African country.

Nigeria spent $462 million for twelve Tucanos and additional upgrades in 2018. The Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) equipment was installed on six of the planes.

Paveway II guided bombs, laser-directed rockets, 12.7 mm ammunition, unguided bombs, and infrared sensors are all aboard the powerful turboprops.

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