NAF deploys female combatants to north-east

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To fortify the assault on insurgents in the North-East and
reinforcement to the troop in that part of the country, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF)
has deployed Air Women and female Air Officers, known as Women of War, for
military operations in the North-East.

The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Sadique Abubakar said
the female military personnel are actively involved in the on-going counter- insurgency
operation with Special Forces against Boko Haram terrorists and other criminal elements.

Air Marshal Abubakar said this in Abuja recently. He stated
that NAF is a gender-sensitive service that encouraged its personnel to explore
their potentials without inhibition in the armed forces.

The Air Force Chief said: “We call them Women of War as they
are well trained to engage in combat and combat support operations for peace,
security and national development.

“The female personnel like their male counterparts, help in
neutralizing insurgents during airstrike missions, while also providing tactical
supports for the ground troops.

“Some of our air women and female officers are regular
combatants who have completed specialized trainings at home and abroad. Some of
them regularly fly Beechcraft, a special fighter plane used for gathering
intelligence, carrying out surveillance and reconnaissance.

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“In the last few months, they courageously flew our aircraft
across North-Eastern states, especially in Borno and the fringe of Lake Chad to
detect and strike at insurgents locations.

“They fly sometimes between four to six hours on the ISR

“The Women of War have continued to showcase their
professional capacity as fearless and courageous military personnel as pilots, loadmasters,
aircraft maintenance engineers, aerospace engineers, armament specialists, squad
leaders, combatants, loadmasters, Military police, and air traffic controllers
among others.””

While the NAFs Women of War are productive and adding value
to the service in critical specialties, some of them are currently undergoing
various studies in combat operations and aircraft maintenance. According to the
Air Chief, a Nigerian female officer is currently undergoing training in the
United States of America to become the first female fighter pilot in the
history of the NAF and another female officer is undergoing training in South
Africa to become the first NAF female helicopter gunship pilot.

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