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The Senate, on Thursday, observed a minute silence in honour of the late Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile.

Arotile, a celebrated Nigerian Air Force’s first female combat helicopter pilot, died in a freak accident at the Nigeria Air Force (NAF) Base Kaduna last week.

The Red Chamber condoled with her family, the Nigerian Air Force, the Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, and the people of the state over the loss.

This followed a motion by Senator Smart Adeyemi (Kogi West), who noted that Arotile served the nation as a Squadron Pilot at the 405 Helicopter Combat Training Group, Enugu, attached to the Air Component of Operation GAMA AIKI in Minna, Niger State.

She had recently completed her promotion examination and was awaiting her next deployment, Adeyemi said.

The lawmaker also noted that, as a participant in the GAMA AIKI in Niger State, she flew her quota of anti-banditry combat missions to ensure a safer and more secured Nigeria.

“Before her untimely death, she made significant and outstanding contributions to the war against terrorism, armed banditry and other forms of criminality in the country,” he said.

He added that her sad demise had reduced the ranks of the Air Force’s female pilots to six, thus she deserves to be memorialized in the Nigeria’s history.

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