The Nigerian Air Force says six weeks is more than enough to crush the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East.
The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Adesola Amosu, who gave the assurance during the inauguration of training operations in Lagos on Sunday, said the Air Force had commenced a 24-hour operation and would complement the Nigerian Army by engaging in a series of air strikes on insurgents’ locations.
On the possibility of elections holding on March 28, Amosu said terrorism was already coming to an end.
He said, “The operation in the North-East is a complex one. Fighting insurgency and terrorism is not an easy task.
“Based on the outline, particularly with the Air Force, we set first to decimate the terrorists by gaining air and ground intelligence so as to deny the enemy freedom of action and movement, disrupt their communication and supply lines and deny them the possibility of regeneration.
“We have done this sufficiently. Their supply lines are heavily depleted; command and control already disrupted and so what we need now is an exercise to complete the project.
“It is so easy for people to say we couldn’t do it in many years and now we claim we can in six weeks. Well naturally, most operations will come to an end. It will get to a point where you can categorically say that within a time space, you can do this. And that is where we are now. We are satisfied that the period allocated should be enough to carry out this project”.
The Air Force boss denied allegations that the military was partisan, adding that the armed forces would continue to defend democracy.
Amosu stressed that his men were already conveying sensitive electoral materials ahead of the polls.
He said, “A democracy must be driven by a strong military. The United States is surviving today because it has a strong military. We are building our own. So, we are doing our job and we do not know about politics.
“We are already moving election materials to major locations. We have some unmanned airfield, which we have deployed soldiers to man in order to prevent bad people from bringing in things that will mess up the elections”.
He also said the Air Force would partner the Nigerian Navy to curb piracy through aerial surveillance.