The Nigerian Air Force says it will take delivery of Augusta 109 Power helicopter from Italy soon, to strengthen its arsenal for the fight against insurgency in the North-West.
The Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, disclosed this at the 2019 First Quarter Chief of Air Staff Conference on Wednesday in Abuja.
Abubakar said that acquisition of the military helicopter was part of renewed efforts of Federal Government to ensure that there was security in the North-West.
He said that the focus was particularly in Zamfara, Sokoto and Kaduna states, where a new detachment had been approved by the Air Force Council.
“We have already provided landing facilities there for helicopters and we have also provided fuelling facilities for the aircraft,” he said.
Abubakar disclosed that NAF was currently reactivating five of its aircrafts, adding that “3L 39 Live Extension Programme’’ was on in Kano and “MI 35 Live Extension Programme’’ in Port Harcourt.
“I believe this methods substantially add to our capacity to boost these assets and make Nigeria secure.
“Similarly, on reactivation, three helicopters in Kanji are being overhauled. We have paid substantially for it and very soon, I believe by September this year, we will have those three helicopters flying.
“So, I think in terms of acquisition and reactivation of aircraft, the service has equally been successful”
The expected US$ 6.3m ( ₦2.3b ) AgustaWestland Power helicopter is a twin-engine, eight-seat multi-purpose helicopter. It is the fastest helicopter in its class .