- The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) said that it was able to identify possible locations of the abducted Chibok school girls
- The force director of public relations stated that the NAF was currently abstaining from attacking the areas to ensure the safety of the girls
- Saying that the Chibok girls are located for sure is a misrepresentation of the words by the NAF director of public relations
The NAF has said that it has been able to identify possible locations of the abducted Chibok school girls. The director of public relations of the force, Group Capt Ayodele Famuyima disclosed this on ChannelsTV on Friday, February 12.
The follow-up statement by the force reads in part: "NAF wishes to categorically state that it has at no time identified the specific location of the Chibok girls. However, it is working round the clock with surveillance aircraft covering the over 157,000 km2 area of the northeast in order to identify the position of not only the Chibok girls, but other Nigerians that might have been held captives."
Therefore, the specific position of the missing girls is yet to be ascertained and the force would continue with surveillance flights around the area.
Famuyima explained some of the tactics used in locating the girls, maintained that the force was currently abstaining from attacking the area to ensure the safety of the girls.
He said that the latest aerial bombardment of Sambisa forest had been aimed at the logistics base of the Boko Haram sect and not areas where the Chibok girls could be located.
He said: “We have no fears that the girls are not there because hat particular location has been under surveillance for quite a while and we suspected maybe its a kind of ammunition depot or maybe a workshop that they are using as their logistics place.
“Once you take off the logistics base, of course you gradually weaken the resolve of the enemy to be able to prosecute any campaign.”
"The Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) has become a force multiplier for us because its cheaper to run these platforms, you are not putting men there (and) the risk of losing human beings is greatly reduced.
“Again the UAVs have the capability to be airborne for up to eleven hours and it's quite cheap to maintain. So, we have been able to employ the UAV to a great extent to carry out reconnaissance and surveillance basically for intelligence gathering on the activities of the Boko Haram.”
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He said that the UAVs have also helped the air force to understand the terrorists’ pattern of movement and “how to be able to counter them should they want to strike or spring any surprise”.