By Amina Yahaya
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF), on Wednesday, began the free treatment of 90,000 persons under a 3-day medical outreach at Gomari area of Maiduguri in Borno.
The Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar, made the disclosure at the inauguration of the exercise in Maiduguri.
Abubakar, represented by Wing Commander, PN Amadi, the Air Task Force Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, said that the exercise was designed as part of its humanitarian intervention and corporate social responsibility to the host communities.
He said that the exercise was aimed at improving healthcare service delivery and well being of persons affected by the conflict and host communities, as well as foster civil-military relations.
Abubakar explained that diagnosis, consultancy, dental, eye and general surgeries, would be conducted free in the exercise. He added that the service had established two clinics at Bama and Dalori Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps and provided feeding to 1,000 children daily in the camps.
“NAF is at the forefront in responding to the welfare and emergency needs of the host communities and the society at large. The gesture is to improve the health and social well being of the communities”, he said.
Abubakar called on the communities to avail themselves of the opportunities and participate in the exercise. While commending President Muhammadu Buahari over his support to the service, Abubakar reiterated its commitments to protect life and property, as well protect the territorial integrity of the nation.
Also speaking, Group Capt. Ali Tanko, the Director, Public Health and Humanitarian Services, NAF Headquarters, added that the exercise was aimed to address medical challenges in the host communities.
Tanko explained that apart from the treatment of ailments, insecticide treated mosquito nets and eye glasses would also be distributed to patients while those with serious ailments would be referred to higher medical facilities.
According to him, the service had conducted over 70 medical outreach programmes in the Northeast and other parts of the country, this year.
In his remarks, Gov. Babagana Zulum of Borno lauded the NAF over the gesture, adding that it would go a long way in improving the health, emotional and social status of the people.
Zulum, who was represented by Mrs. Yabawa Kolo, the Chairman of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), also lauded NAF over the successes recorded in the counter-insurgency campaign and peace restoration process in the State.