Pesident Bola Tinubu has approved the purchase of 12 fighter helicopters for the Nigerian Army.
The helicopters which are MD 530F Cayuse attack helicopters would enable the Nigeria Army’s aviation unit to improve ground troops’ efficacy during operations.
The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, disclosed this at the opening of the Nigerian Army Aviation Seminar on Tuesday in Abuja.
Lagbaja said the purchase would also contribute to the overall operational success of joint and coalition troops.
The COAS added that the fighter helicopters will enable the aspiration of the Nigerian Army to have an equipped aviation unit which would support ground troops as they focus on tactical and operational engagements in line with the experiences of nations like the United States, Pakistan, Colombia, Egypt, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda.
He said: “The army aviation arms of these countries have shown effectiveness in countering contemporary security threats and providing vital support to ground forces.
“In view of the need to realize this, and in its bid to appropriately respond to contemporary and emerging security threats, the Nigerian Army resuscitated its aviation aspiration in 2014.
“I am happy to inform this gathering that the Nigerian army is willing to learn from the army aviation journeys of the countries mentioned earlier.
“Our willingness to learn from them is to adapt their best practices to suit our unique operational environment and avoid their mistakes.
“I can proudly report that since 2014, the Nigerian Army has made commendable progress in training pilots, aircraft engineers, technicians, and other ground support.”
Also speaking, the Acting Coordinator, Nigerian Army Aviation, Brig.-Gen. Musa Alkali, said the helicopter unit would have an active role in bolstering ground operations and addressing the current security challenges confronting the nation.