ABUJA, OCTOBER 10, 2016 – Two aircraft from the presidential fleet have been handed over to the Nigerian air force, six days after two jets from the same fleet were put up for sale.At the handover ceremony on Monday, Babagana Monguno national security adviser, signed the transfer documents on behalf of the president.
The two helicopters, which are part of the 10 aircraft in the presidential air fleet, were acquired on October 20, 2014 and May 21, 2015.
According to the presidency office of digital engagement, the two aircraft being handed over today are Agusta Westland AW101 helicopters and possess ballistics defence capabilities, and are equipped against certain forms of missile attacks.
“It is with a big sense of appreciation that I accept these helicopters into the Air Force,” said Sadique Abubakar, chief of air staff.
“One of the helicopters will be configured and deployed as an air ambulance, while second will be deployed as a troop carrier. The two helicopters will be immediately reconfigured and deployed to the northeast for the use of Nigerian troops.
“The air ambulance will carry a trauma unit, to ensure that injured troops get immediate medical assistance during airlift. These helicopters are some of the most sophisticated, most comfortable and most equipped in the world.
“We can’t wait to fly our new aircraft. That’s why we’re all dressed in combat gear.”
Since Muhammadu Buhari ascended the presidency in May 2015, this is the second time he is handing aircraft from the presidential air fleet to the Nigerian air force.