he Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has signed Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) and Equipment and Protective Applications International Limited (EPAIL).
A statement by NAF Director of Public Relations and Information Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet on Tuesday said, the partnership would reduce NAF’s over-dependence on foreign technology and make it more innovative and resourceful.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, the Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Oladayo Amao who was represented by the Chief of Standards and Evaluation, Air Vice Marshal Olusegun Philip noted that collaboration were necessary if the NAF was to realize its objective of moving the nation and the Service towards becoming technologically advanced and self-reliant.
The CAS said the MoUs, “would facilitate solution-driven techniques to NAF’s technical challenges which would in turn translate to greater operational efficiency for the Service”.
He noted that in line with the focus of the federal government towards promoting indigenous technology, the NAF has been looking inwards to gradually wean itself of overdependence on foreign technology and be more innovative and resourceful as aptly encapsulated in 2 of the key drivers of his vision.
Air Marshal Amao further noted that through collaboration with other organizations and agencies, the NAF has been able to produce items such as autopilot cassettes and hydraulic diaphragms for the Mi-35 helicopter and L-39ZA trainer aircraft.
Other R&D feats recorded include production of Alpha-Jet aircraft anti-skid break system test bench and batteries for the Mi-helicopters series.
According to him, “these and many other innovative efforts have provided the impetus for the NAF to effectively project air power in support of friendly forces.’
While responding on behalf of the MoU partners, the Director General ITF, Sir Joseph Ari said that the MoUs would establish a framework through which the signatories would work together in an effort to nurture a cooperative and win-win relationship among the 3 institutions as well as enhance productivity.
“You have dependable allies in us. We will pursue the MoUs with the vigour and seriousness it deserves for our overall benefits,” he said.