As part of measures to squarely contain all forms of insecurity in Birnin Gwari local government area and its environs, the Nigerian Air Force on Saturday commissioned the 271 Nigerian Air Force detachment in Birnin Gwari.
The 271 NAF detachment is the brain child of the Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadiq Baba Abubakar, as part of the Air Force efforts at combacting the persistent insecurity occasioned by armed banditry in the area.
Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai, who commissioned the detachment commended the Emir of Birnin Gwari, Alhaji Jibril Zubairu Maigwari II for donating part of his land for the establishment, while assuring that the State Government will ensure that he his compensated accordingly.
The governor appealed to the CAS to help in the deployment of NAF sepcial forces to help man the Kaduna-Abuja highway to help address the recurring kidnapping activities there, while appealing also for another NAF detachment to be established in Kajuru local government area of the state.
He assured that President Muhammadu Buhari is committed to ensuring total defeat of all forms of terroriam, adding that, “All the insecurity menance will soon be over. The present All Progresive Congress (APC) is focused on ensuring that Nigerians are proud of their country.
“The prevalence of terrorism, armed banditry and kidnapping, has increased in recent times. And we are grateful that the Armed Forces of Nigeria, particularly the NAF, is boosting security operations and developing even more effective strategies to end this menace.
“The establishment of the 271 NAF Detachment Birnin Gwari is therefore timely, as it will further boost the ongoing Operation DIRAN MIKIYA, Operation SHARAN DAJI and play a very crucial role in restoring and maintaining the peace in all affected areas.
“While we recognize the efforts of the Nigerian Air Force, we also want to appeal to the Chief of Air Staff to approve the deployment of NAF Special Forces for the Abuja-Kaduna road to participate in the new Joint security operations aimed at confronting the prevalence of armed banditry and kidnapping that has bedeviled the road for the last two years”.
Earlier in his address, the CAS said, the NAF for some time now has been involved in various internal security operations in the country, either singly or in conjunction with sister Services. One of such operations is Operation DIRAN MIKIYA, which he said is intended to neutralise and flush out armed bandits and kidnappers as well as cattle rustlers operating in the North-West region.
“Accordingly, the 271 NAF Detachment was established as a blocking force for troops involved in Operation DIRAN MIKIYA and SHARAN DAJI.
“The NAF is committed to seeing that the territorial integrity of our dear country is preserved as this is the only country we can call our own. It is our desire, therefore, to ensure that the menace of terrorism, kidnapping, cattle rustling and armed banditry are curtailed, if not completely eradicated.
“The commissioning of 271 NAF Detachment Birnin Gwari is a testimony of the NAF commitment to the fight against insurgency and banditry in Nigeria.
“Let me quickly add here that the establishment of 271 NAF Detachment Birnin Gwari, would not have been possible without the full support of the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari. May I also recognise the immense contribution of the National Assembly, especially its committees on Defence and Air Force in both the Senate and House of Representatives.
“The NAF is equally grateful to His Excellency, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, the Executive Governor of Kaduna State and the good people of Birnin Gwari for providing the land and their cooperation in achieving this feat. The NAF can only continue to say ‘Thank You’”.
The CAS reassured Nigerians of the firm dedication of the NAF to the fight against terrorism and all forms of criminality in Nigeria, while commending all NAF personnel involved in various operations across the country for their relentless efforts in ensuring peace and calm in the country.