The Cameroon Air Force has received the delivery of two Cessna 208 Caravan intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft from the US at Yaounde.
With the delivery, the airforce will deploy the jets that enable it to fight against the Boko Haram and Islamic State in West Africa, reported Defense World.Net.
Equipped with cameras with a range of up to 10km, the two aircraft will be capable of providing the Cameroon Air Force with real-time data via video and photograph, as well as through radio communications.
US Ambassador to Cameroon Peter Henry Barlerin was quoted by DefenceWeb as saying: “These surveillance aircraft represent a new link in the chain of our excellent cooperation, and have the potential to improve the safety and effectiveness of Cameroon’s fighting forces.
“Flying day or night, throughout the Far North, they can provide real-time information through video and photograph, as well as through radio communications, to both national decision makers and to operational commanders.”
As well as the two Cessna 208 Caravans, the US has also provided the airforce with a complete package, including the training of pilots, maintenance technicians and equipment operators. It has also supplied the delivery of spare parts and on-the-ground technical support.
Barlerin added: “The US looks forward to continuing to work with our Cameroonian partners to ensure that these aircraft are smoothly and safely absorbed into the airforce inventory.”
On 2 December, two new Cessna 208B Grand Caravans arrived in Chad from the US to be initially used for pilot training for the Chadian Air Force.
The two Cessna 208B jets for the Cameroon Air Force were delivered in January this year, following air and ground crew training on the aircraft carried out in the US last year.
The US Air Force (USAF) Life Cycle Management Centre awarded contracts for the upgrade of six Grand Caravan aircraft for the airforces of Cameroon, Chad and the Philippines in 2016.