Boko Haram, US sells N181bn warplanes, weapons to Nigeria to help fight insurgency

The United States government, Department of Defence, the Pentagon, has informed the US Congress of the sale of 12 Super Tucano A-29 ground attack aircraft and weapons worth $181 billion to the Nigerian government in its bid to combat the Islamic sect Boko Haram.

Pentagon communicated Defence Security Cooperation Agency as having made the announcement to the US legislature.the sale of the 12 ground attack aircraft valued at $593m (N181bn) to the US Congress on Monday. “Reuters reported ”

The Super Tucano A-29, “an agile, propeller-driven plane with reconnaissance and surveillance as well as attack capabilities, is made by Brazil’s Embraer.”

The US had in April, this year, agreed to sell high-tech aircraft to Nigeria to tackle the Boko Haram insurgency in the North-East.

United States officials told the Associated Press that the Congress was expected to receive formal notification within weeks, setting in motion the deal with Nigeria.

Senator Christopher Coons, Head of the US Congress Delegation, said during an assessment visit to the Theatre Command of Operation LAFIYA DOLE in Maiduguri on Tuesday, that the US is dedicated to helping Nigeria defeat the Boko Haram insurgency.

According to NAN, he said the visit was designed to appraise the performance of the military and to enable him to understand the challenges facing the Armed Forces in accomplishing its mission to defeat the insurgents. He said:

I am pleased to head the Delegation of the U.S. Congress; three Senators and three House members to come and hear about the hard work of the military in the Northeast of Nigeria.

The US is strongly supporting the hard work of the military in combating terrorism and we are glad for the opportunity to know how we can support Nigeria in combating terrorism.

They added that the arrangement would call for Nigeria purchasing up to 12 Embraer A-29 Super Tucano aircraft with sophisticated targeting gear.

The purchase will gulp about $600m, said the officials in April. They were, however, unauthorised to discuss the terms of the sale publicly and preferred anonymity on the diplomatic conversations.

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