There has been panic in Jikwoyi, Nyanya and Karu satellite areas of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, over some military fighter jets reportedly hovering over houses and creating deafening noises.Residents said the jets had been combing the areas since Saturday in “a war-like manner.”
It was gathered that the military aircraft, said to be about seven, flew on Monday at low levels in the Three Arms Zone and Asokoro areas of Abuja, creating panic for passersby and people going about their business.
One of the eyewitnesses, who gave his name as Umar Bichi, said the noise of the military aircraft flying at low levels made communication impossible, while some people also scampered to safety because of the effect.
“We were in the office around 1pm when the fighter jets flew almost at a landing level. There were about seven of them which I counted. The noise was deafening and it created panic for everyone such that some people thought it was a terrorist attack,” Bichi said.
The Nigerian Air Force on Monday confirmed the deployment of fighter jets to fly around at low levels.
The NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Commodore Ibikunle Daramola, said the deployment was meant for rehearsals of aerial display in Abuja ahead of the October 1 Independence Celebrations.
He said, “The NAF will carry out aerial display as part of activities to mark Nigeria’s 58th anniversary celebration. Consequently, there will be movement of NAF aircraft within the Federal Capital Territory from Monday to October 2, as NAF pilots commence rehearsals for the occasion.
“Fighter aircraft will be flying at low levels during the rehearsals. The NAF therefore wishes to advise members of the public not to panic but to go about their normal business.”