From: Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
The Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, has said the Nigerian Air Force is committed to the welfare of its personnel.
He made the assertion during commissioning of newly renovated and upgraded Air Training Command Officers Mess in Kaduna yesterday.
The CAS who was represented by the Group Managing Director (GMD) Nigerian Air Force Investments Limited (NAFIL),
AVM Abubakar Bagare,said the project was fully funded and carried out by NAFIL as part of their mandate towards uplifting the welfare of NAF personnel.
According to him decay was witnessed under different facility managers who failed to imbibe the long known culture of maintenance and prudent utilization of resources, which the Service holds in high esteem.
He noted that the renovation and upgrade of the Mess by NAFIL had restored its lost glory and brought it back to the standards that NAF facilities are known for.
He also disclosed that the major reason for the establishment of the NAF companies was primarily to cater for the welfare needs of its personnel and their families.
“NAFIL as one of the subsidiaries of the Nigerian Air Force Holding Company, has done very well in the upliftment of personnel welfare”, Abubakar said.
“The introduction of additional recreational facilities in this Mess for the convenience and relaxation of NAF officers as well as their families and friends is highly commendable.
He further said that personnel of a fighting force needed very comfortable and highly befitting mess that provide both appropriate lodging and entertainment facilities for their wellbeing.
“This upgraded Officerssssthe potentials to provide s viewsß% of the modern and highly commendable facilities and innovations NAFIL has put in place for the comfort of its patrons”, the CAS said. S
Earlier, the Air Officer Commanding (AOC), Air Training Command (ATC), AVM Musa Mukthar, recalled that the CAS had recently in Kaduna commissioned two students’ hostel blocks built by NAFIL in Air force Institute of Technology.
Mukthar who was represented by the ATC’s Chief of Staff, Air Commodore Abraham Adole, thanked the CAS for his approval for the NAFIL portfolios and projects embarked upon in Kaduna.
“Your commitment to the provision of infrastructure and welfare amenities for enhanced operations and personnel comfort, especially within the ATC AOR is indeed very impressive and well appreciated”,Mukthar said.
Also speaking during the commissioning, Air Commodore Uchechi Nwagwu, the Managing Director of NAFIL, said the renovation and upgrade of the mess was one of the latest investment portfolios of NAFIL.
According to him, management of the facilities was one of NAFILs efforts at diversification of its portfolios and enhancing its turnover while contributing its quota at meeting the welfare needs of NAF personnel and the general public.
He added that the company had gradually grown to become a leading investment outfit that manages contributions of NAF personnel.
Nwagwu noted that, earlier before now, NAFIL forwarded a proposal to the Head Quarters of NAF to take over, renovate and manage the Air Training Command Officers Mess on behalf of the Command.
“This request after intense due diligence, was approved by the CAS with subsequent clearance and funds approval by the NAFIL Board of Directors, the company took over the facility from the ATC, he said.
He stressed that the facility was not only in a great state of decay but also did not befitted the good image of the NAF and had numerous liabilities in its confines.
“Among the liabilities included huge financial indebtedness to the KDEDC, tax liabilities to relevant regulatory authorities and several months of unpaid staff salaries, he said.
Nwagwu noted that all the liabilities had been cleared and the facility given a clean bill of health by all relevant agencies and affected individuals.
He thanked the management and staff of NAFIL, saying that their selflessness and commitment led to the timely and excellent completion of the project.