Saturday, March 27, 2021 10:09 am
By Yahaya Isah
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) and other sister services have agreed to henceforth subordinate themselves to the Defence Headquarters (DHQ), under the leadership of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Lucky Irabor.
The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao, said this while on his maiden tour of the NAF Tactical Air Command (TAC), Makurdi, on Friday, according to a statement by the Director of Public Relations and Information, NAF Headquarters, Air Cdr. Edward Gabkwet.
According to the statement, just as it is obtainable in military organisations worldwide, the DHQ was responsible for the command and control of the entire Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN).
This, Amao was quoted to have said, also means that all ongoing joint operations and Joint Task Forces would be directly subordinated to the DHQ, and their commanders report directly to the CDS.
The statement added that it was the new line the service chiefs had greed to as efforts were ongoing to bring to an end the various security challenges facing the country.
”When we say we are members of the AFN, we mean all the three services represented as a single entity.
“When we accept the fact that we, the members of the AFN constitute a united entity, the issue of rivalry will not arise,” he said.
Amao also said NAF will revert to the military tradition of adherence to seniority and hierarchy, in the appointment of officers to head command posts.
He stated “Situations where subordinate officers are given command appointments, ahead of their seniors, does not augur well for the system, as this breeds insubordination and indiscipline.
“There will be no sacred cows when it comes to discipline, as those found wanting will be punished as ascribed in the Armed Forces Act.”
He also reminded the personnel of the impending arrival of some platforms purchased for NAF to Makurdi for efficient and effective service delivery.
The CAS, however, urged the personnel to support the 131 Engineering Group, being the hub of some of the platforms, as well as making the foreign technicians feel at home.
When fully operational, Amao said the platforms would be deployed immediately to the theatres of operations and should hopefully be the game changers in all DHQ-led operations nationwide.
He also stated that efforts were currently underway to improve the combat efficiency of the NAF and other services to an appreciable level with the full backing of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The CAS, therefore, enjoined NAF personnel to continue to support the Federal Government in its efforts to equip NAF and other services.
He also assured that the non promotion of NAF personnel, due to inability to attend courses that should enable their upgrading, would be given special consideration, as soon as they met the set criteria for the promotion.
On NAF’s Post Service Housing Schemes, Amao frowned at the situation, where personnel were compelled and put under financial stress to meet up with initial deposits for the houses.
”Housing schemes by NAF should be easily affordable and stress-free,” he said as he immediately directed the Chief of Administration to work out modalities whereby payments for houses would be deducted from monthly salaries and not in lump sums that usually exerts undue pressure on personnel.
”These practices have proven to be effective and efficient in other developing countries and I see no reason why we can’t try it here,” Amao said.