As NAF Holds Maiden Base Defence Seminar
By Gift Olivia Samuel, The Sight News
ABUJA: In view of the evolving security environment, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF), has revealed that it is obligatory that it further enhance its defence to neutralize contemporary future threats to the nation’s interests as well as security of its bases.
The Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar who said this on Tuesday at the opening ceremony of the maiden NAF Base Defence Seminar 2019, noted that the on-going situation, requires an integrated/coordinated approach from all base and independent unit commanders.
The CAS who was represented by the Chief of Policy and Plans, Air Vice Marshal Emmanuel Anebi, stated also, that field commanders are now required to continuously appraise developments in their areas of operations and take proactive measures necessary to defend NAF assets.
Speaking on the implementation of the Base Defence concept, he said, “To ensure that we have capable human resources to implement the Base Defence concept, we have trained over 3,600 personnel drawn from the Regiment, Intelligence and Air Police specialties in force protection in complex air ground environment with the assistance of the British Military Advisory Training Team from 2015 to date.
“This training has ensured that we develop Base Defence plans tailored to the diverse human and physical environments where our bases are located. I am pleased that this Seminar will see us consolidated on the effective approach which we have developed”, he remarked.
Additionally, the CAS disclosed that currently, the NAF has a Quick Response Force, 4 Quick Response Groups and 2 Quick Response Wing under the Special Operations Command spread over the 6 geopolitical zones, adding also that it was imperative to beef up the manpower of the Regiment to meet the manning requirements and as a result, the Regiment has seen a recent increase in its strength from about 1,300 to over 4,000.
“I therefore consider the theme of this seminar, which is “Enhancing Force Protection of NAF Bases for Effective Force Projection”, to be appropriate considering our current security challenges”, the CAS said. “Commanders are therefore charged to invoke an understanding of what the Base Defence Concept is all about, with a view to implementing the Seminar resolutions at your various locations”.
While congratulating the personnel for making the Nigerian Air Force proud during the successful presidential and national assembly elections, he charged them to ensure that all officers and airmen under command remain nonpartisan during the next round of elections.
He further commended the Chief of Training and Operations, Director of Regiment and the Organising Committee for their efforts in conceptualising and organising the event.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Chief of Training and Operations(CTOP), Air Vice Marshal Isiaka Amao, stated that unlike other arms of the Armed Forces, the Air Force requires secure Bases for effective employment of airpower, adding that security of Nigerian Air Force Bases’ has been a source of concern for the Nigerian Air Force leadership in the recent past.
“Accordingly, the Service recently developed and operationalized a Base Defence Concept that emphasizes integrated detection and response by leveraging trained manpower, intelligence and emplacement of appropriate technology.
“Currently, the concept has been successfully implemented in frontline Bases in Maiduguri, Yola, Bauchi and Port Harcourt with the leadership desiring to do same in the remaining Air Force Bases.
“The ratification of the Base Defence Concept has enhanced the synergy of the Regiment, Air Police and Intelligence Air Force Specialties”, he stated.
The CTOP harped on the need to embrace best global practices to defend NAF Bases, as airpower is critical to mitigate the numerous security challenges confronting the nation.
The maiden Nigerian Air Force Base Defence Seminar 2019, is the first of its kind in the history of the Nigerian Air Force.