The outgoing Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar has urged the new Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshal Oladayo Amao to sustain and build on the capacity building initiatives he had put in place in the last 5 years.
He, however, noted that as he exits the Nigerian Air Force, he is leaving the service fulfilled because he had substantially achieved what he set out to achieve.
This is contained in his valedictory speech on Tuesday at Fly Out Parade of the former CAS, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, at Parade Ground, NAF Base, Bill Clinton Drive, Abuja.
He said the Nigerian Air Force would be able to employ air power more effectively, efficiently and timely in all theatres of operations across the country.
“I want to encourage you to sustain and build on the capacity building initiatives we have put in place in the last 5 years. The service through this initiative has trained and winged 133 pilots who today constitute 49% of all active NAF pilots that are fighting in different theatres of conflicts to secure our country and protect our people.
“Another 21 pilots will be completing their training before the end of the first quarter of 2021 to join their comrades in the fight to defend our territorial integrity and national sovereignty. In the area of bridging the gap in force projection and force protection we have made tremendous progress in training NAF Special Forces and force protection elements who have been recognized as a formidable force both within and outside Nigeria,” Air Marshal Abubakar said.
He also disclosed that the NAF under his watch enhanced research and development capacity through a partnership with 15 Nigerian universities to significantly address some of the service’s aircraft maintenance challenges.
According to him, “I must not fail to recognize the crucial role played by the incoming Chief of the Air Staff and other senior officers still in the Service in our R&D efforts. I am very confident that the current Chief of the Air Staff has all it takes to move the Air Force to a much higher level. It is my prayer that the Almighty will grant you the wisdom and strength to move the Air Force to a more enviable height”.
While enjoining personnel to extend the support they extended to him or even more to his successor, Abubakar said that ‘we collectively have every reason also to celebrate our achievements’.
He also urged personnel of the service to keep on giving their best in the service of Nigeria, especially at this critical time when the country is facing unprecedented challenges to our security and sovereignty.
He equally expressed optimism that, Nigerian will remain on the trajectory to becoming a great nation that we all will be proud of.
In conclusion, he appealed to all Nigerians to join hands with all our men and women in uniform to create a secured and united Nigeria.