Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The Nigerian Air Force is set to commence flights operations into the Bayelsa International Passenger/Cargo Airport to boost confidence in airline operators that the airport is safe for operations.
The Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Mobility Command, Air Vice Marshal Uburufih Peter-Uzezi who disclosed this in Yenagoa during a courtesy call on Governor Henry, Seriake Dickson, at Government House Yenagoa, said NAF flight operations would demonstrate to other airline operators that the facility is safe.
Peter-Uzezi commended Governor Dickson for his developmental strides in every sector of the state, including the construction of the airport with the longest runway in the country and for partnering the air force and its sister organisations.
He appealed for the release of funds for the completion of the Community Secondary School in Zarama, Biseni, Yenagoa Local Government Area, which was offered to the Air Force for the citing of Air Force Comprehensive Secondary School expected to commence academic activities in September.
Dickson in his remarks also disclosed that in June, commercial flight operations from Abuja and Lagos would commence adding that the government had intensified efforts to complete the fencing of the airport to prevent animals from straying into the runway.
The governor who commended the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, for the partnership to secure the airport by deploying its personnel to the facility also gave thumbs up to the officers and men of the Air Force for their exemplary conduct and professionalism during the last election.
According to him, unlike the Nigerian Army which displayed partisanship during the 2019 general elections, personnel of the Air Force had shown in clear terms that they are disciplined, well-trained and are alive not only to their duties, the people and country but to their own code of conduct.
He said the last elections in the state were far from peaceful as the officers and men of the Nigeria Army were used as an armed wing of the All Progressives Congress, maiming and killing innocent citizens of the state.
“During the elections in this state, soldiers turned themselves to be agents of political actors in the APC and may that day never come in our country when all organs especially of the security apparatus will or are expected to become political operators; may that day never come in this country.
“Time and time again, I have had the unpleasant duty of leading and mobilising this state to go for peaceful elections, only to be confronted by agents of the Nigerian state that should be apolitical, playing active political roles, killing, maiming and terrorising our people.”