Benue killings: NAF deploys 1,000 troops, 300 Special Forces

Posted by Rose Ejembi, Makurdi | 24 June 2018 | 1,149 times

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•Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar

Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has disclosed that the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has committed over 1,000 officers and men and 300 Special Forces to curb the security challenges in Benue State.

The CAS disclosed this on Saturday when he led the Chairman, House Committee on Defence (Air Force), Hon. Samson Okwu and other top NAF officers to the commissioning ceremony of single officers quarters and Cancer Screening Center at the NAF Base in Makurdi, the Benue State capital.

Abubakar revealed that NAF had also deployed two F7, two Mi-35 helicopters, one ATR and one 350 King Air surveillance aircraft to participate in the Operation Whirl Stroke targeted at checkmating the farmer/herders clashes in Benue.

“The deployment of 2 X F7, 2 x Mi-35 helicopters, 1 x ATR and 1 x 350/ King Air surveillance aircraft to participate in OPERATION WH/RL STROKE targeted at checkmating the farmers/herdsmen clashes attest to the never-ending NAF commitment to the protection of both citizens and their properties throughout the length and breadth of the country.

He noted that the Mi-35P aircraft that joined the theatre of Operation Whirl Stroke was recently overhauled and was formally accepted back into the NAF two weeks ago.

“The induction of the Mi35P into the theatre of OPERATION WHIRL STROKE and the commissioning of various projects in NAF Base Makurdi is a clear testimony of the NAF intent to increase presence in Benue State and add value to people of the State.”

He restated NAF’s commitment towards ensuring that Benue State and the country at large is rid of all forms of security challenges that hinder economic, social and cultural well-being of the people.

The CAS who explained further that the 10 by one-bedroom Single Officers’ Quarters was an initiative to provide accommodation for the increasing number of young officers posted to Makurdi expressed optimism that the effort would address some of the accommodation challenges and provide a conducive atmosphere for increased productivity of the young officers.

He maintained that the establishment a Cancer Screening Center at Makurdi was in recognition that Cancer, had been the second leading cause of death globally and has accounted for 8.8 million deaths in 2015 according to World Health Organisation.

“To reduce the disability, suffering and death caused by cancer worldwide, it is advocated that effective and affordable programmes for early diagnosis, screening, treatment and palliative care be carried out.

“This informed the idea of establishing a cancer screening center in NAF Base Makurdi to facilitate early diagnosis and prevention of premature deaths amongst NAF personnel, families and host communities. It is envisaged that the Cancer Screening Centre in NAF Base Makurdi would provide an additional outlay for provisioning same service to the host community.”

Source: News Express

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