The Presidency says Nigeria will take delivery of six of the ordered 12 Super Tucanos fighter aircraft in mid-July 2021 to enhance the fight against insurgency and terrorism in the country.
President Muhammadu Buhari’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, revealed this on his Twitter handle on Thursday in Abuja.
He stated that the remaining six would be arriving in the country shortly after the arrival of the first set.
The presidential aide further disclosed that 14 Nigerian pilots are being trained at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia, USA on these planes.
Shehu tweeted: “The Super Tucanos came off the production line in Jacksonville, Florida, and are now being equipped and flight tested.
“The Air-Ground-Integration school is the training hub on targeting and minimization of civilian casualties.
“At present, five Nigerian Super Tucanos are at Moody AFB in Georgia for pilot and maintainer training.”
Shehu said the two companies had released images of the sixth aircraft, which also would be flown to Moody, in a jungle camouflage scheme.
He added: “The painted jungle scheme NAF A-29 now moves on to mission modification at Moody Air Force Base.”
The News Agency of Nigeria reports the foreign military sales contract from the US government to build 12 A-29s for the Nigerian Air Force was awarded in November 2018 at the cost of $329 million.
“The armed turboprops are intended for use against Boko Haram and Islamic State militants,” the presidential aide further maintained.