Following reports of a kidnapping attempt on the Kaduna-Abuja foiled by Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai’s convoy, Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has reiterated its commitment to support the police and other security agencies with imagery intelligence to tackle security challenges in Nigeria.
NAF Spokesman, Air Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, made this known in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.
He noted this was part of inter-agency cooperation to address security challenges in the country, especially, the issue of kidnapping and banditry along the Abuja-Kaduna highway and Kaduna-Birnin Gwari axis.
Daramola said the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, disclosed this when the Acting Inspector General of Police, (I-G), Mohammed Adamu, and the Director-General DSS (DG DSS), Yusuf Bichi, visited him at NAF Headquarters, Abuja.
The I-G and the DG DSS on arrival went into a closed-door meeting with the CAS before undertaking a guided tour of facilities at the newly established, state-of-the-art Geospatial-Intelligence Data Centre (GIDC) and Strategic Air Operations Centre (SAOC).
According to him, the GIDC, equipped with high-tech computer hardware and software, was established to enhance the acquisition, analysis, interpretation and exploitation of imagery and geospatial information to provide actionable intelligence for the Armed Forces and other security agencies.
Similarly, the well-equipped SAOC is expected to greatly enhance the coordination of air operations in support of internal security operations across the country.
The Inspector General while inspecting the facilities, expressed delight and satisfaction with the cutting edge technologies and sophisticated computer software at the Centres.
He said the essence of the visit to the CAS was to explore possibilities of using NAF air assets and the products of the GIDC to improve the effectiveness of operations to deal with issue of kidnapping and armed banditry.
“Especially along the Kaduna-Abuja Highway and other parts of the country including Kaduna, Zamfara, Katsina, Niger and Kogi States.”
According to him, the criminals had moved towards the Abuja axis to carry out their nefarious activities, as a result of the onslaught by security agencies against the bandits in Zamfara.
“I felt that as a security agency, we need to synergize with other security outfits.
” We don’t have the air capability but the NAF has them, with this, we can have a joint operation to deal with this security issue.”