General Ibrahim Attahiru, the Chief of Army Staff, has died in a plane crash. In a statement, the Nigerian Air Force confirmed that there was an accident involving one of its aircraft in Kaduna but did not go into details.
“An air crash involving a @NigAirForce aircraft occurred this evening near the Kaduna International Airport. The immediate cause of the crash is still being ascertained. More details to follow soon,” read the statement signed by Edward Gabkwet, the force’s Director of Public Relations and Information.
A source said there were eight persons on board the aircraft but NewsWireNGR recalls that, Attahiru was appointed Chief of Army Staff on January 26, 2021.
Born on 10th August 1966 in Doka, Kaduna North Local Government Area, Kaduna State, he graduated from the Nigerian Defence Academy.
He commenced cadets training in January 1984 and was commissioned into the rank of Second Lieutenant in December 1986 as an Infantry Officer. He holds a Masters degree in Strategic Management and Policy Studies from the Nigerian Defence Academy.
General Attahiru has held several appointments on the staff, instructional and in command during his military career. He had a tour of duty with the United Nations in Sierra leone as a Military Observer, where he facilitated United Kingdom military engagement, Operation BARASS in September 2000.
He was an Operation Officer and later Company Commander in NIBATT 19 ECOMOG Operations in Liberia. Also, he had the unique privilege of having commanded with distinction all through the chain of command in the Nigerian Army.
Prominent among these appointments are Commanding Officer 146 Battalion Nigerian Army (Operation HARMONY IV) in the Bakassi Peninsula, Commander 13 Brigade Nigerian Army (Operation PULO SHIELD), General Officer Commanding 82 Division Nigerian Army. He was one time Theatre Commander Operation LAFIYA DOLE.
General Attahiru has been exposed to leadership and professional development programmes at globally renowned institutions. He was at the National Defence College, Kenya for the National Defence Management and Security Studies Course and at the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Special Forces Academy Shijiazhuang-Hubei Province, China for the Basic and Advanced Special/Operations Commando Forces Courses.
He has undertaken leadership and security policy course at the prestigious Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University USA, Graduate School of Media and Communication, Agha Khan University of Nairobi, Bournemouth University Disaster Management Center and the Geneva Centre for Security Policy.
The General has several honours and awards to his credit. He is a highly decorated officer with UNAMSIL Medal, ECOMOG Medal, Forces Service Star, Meritorious Service Star, Distinguish Service Star, Grand Service Star, Corp Medal of Honour, Command medal, Field Command Medal and Field Command Medal of Honour.