A rocket pod affixed to NAF 567
A newly-acquired Gazelle helicopter of the Nigerian Air Force – altogether new to the inventory.
CONTENT SUPPORT: DRAG_ON
Watch this video clip, pay special attention from 4:46
The embedded video also shows some unfamiliar helicopters with fenestrons which are almost certainly Gazelle helicopters. Before now, the Nigerian Air Force were not known to operate any Gazelle helicopters. However, a Beegeagle’s Blogger, “Air Support”, only a few days before the appearance of this embedded Channels Television video, alerted this blog and with uncanny accuracy, to his spotting of Gazelle helicopters at a NAF facility in Lagos.
Fathomably and in the wake of the botched deal for Israeli AH-1 Cobra helicopters,the NAF might have reached out for armed Gazelle helicopters instead. The source of these helicopters remains unclear but the Nigerian Air Force upgraded and reinducted a pair of Super Puma helicopters (NAF 565 and NAF 567) at the facilities of Eurocopter Romania in 2012. Both helicopters can be seen in the embedded video above. They were put into storage in 1997 and thereafter refurbished, upgraded and returned to service in March 2012.
At the time, an outgone Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Mohammed Dikko Umar told Nigeria’s semi-official Nigerian Television Authority News that, a further two units of Super Puma in storage had been earmarked for upgradation at the facilities of Eurocopter Romania.
Meanwhile, Radio Nigeria Network News this morning quoted Air Marshal Adesola Amosun, Nigeria’s Chief of the Air Staff, as enjoining residents of Owode (near Lagos) and environs not to panic as the NAF immediately take to the skies for the calibration of the weapons on the newly weaponised helicopters and finetune their tactics for the ongoing counterinsurgency efforts in the Far Northeast of Nigeria.
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