Nigeria spent N2billion to fuel fighter jets for 2,105 missions against Boko Haram – Air Force

The Air Officer Commanding Tactical Air Command Nurudeen Balogun of the Nigerian Air Force on Monday, January 16 in Yola, Adamawa state said the force flew 6773 hours in 2,105 missions and 3,534 sorties in its operations in the North-East of the country in 2016.

The officer said this while briefing the Federal Government team and representatives of Bring Our Girls Back (BBOG) on tour of the North-East.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, and his Defense counterpart Mansur Dan-Alli led the team.

Balogun, who is an Air Vice Mashal, also said that the force used over N2 billion for Jet A1 fuel for aircraft.

He further disclosed that the N2 billion excludes the cost of maintenance and consumables during the period.

“A total of 348 sorties were generated by the air component for the operation that led to the capture of Alargano, the supposedly spiritual headquarters of Boko Haram.

“The intensity of the operation of crackdown forced some breakaway groups of the Boko Haram insurgents to move towards the far North.

“The Multi-national Joint Task Force initiated Operation Gama Aiki and very important location, Malamfatori, was captured on Sept. 27, 2016,” he said.

On the other hand, the Air Component Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole Charles Owoh noted that compared to only one in July 2015, not less than five serviceable surveillance aircrafts were now operational.

This, he said, is as a result of government’s commitment to ending insurgency in the region

Meanwhile, pilots have opened up for the first time about their roles in the war against terrorism ravaging the Northern part of the country

According to some of the pilots, the Boko Haram terrorists are seen as a group of nuisance requiring unnecessary attention.