Affendi Buang is the 21st Armed Forces chief

He is the 2nd RMAF chief to take over as the Armed Forces’ head. He succeeds Zulkifli Zainal Abidin

by AFIQ AZIZ / pic by BERNAMA

THE Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) Chief General Tan Sri Affendi Buang (picture; right) has been appointed Malaysia’s 21st Armed Forces head yesterday.

He succeeded General Tan Sri Zulkifli Zainal Abidin (picture; left), who handed over his duties during an official handover ceremony, witnessed by Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu and his deputy Senator Liew Chin Tong.

Zulkifli assumed the role on June 20, 2018, from General Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor.

Affendi is the second RMAF chief to take over as the Armed Forces’ head.

The first was General Tan Sri Azizan Ariffin who was appointed as the 17th chief of the Armed Forces on Sept 1, 2009. He held the position until June 14, 2011.

Yesterday’s event concluded with a military send-off for Zulkifli.

Born on Aug 21, 1962, in Kuching, Sarawak, Affendi received his early education at his hometown before being offered a place in the Royal Military College in Sungai Besi, Kuala Lumpur.

He completed his Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia in 1979 and joined the military as a cadet in the RMAF in 1980.

The Sarawakian was trained as a jet fighter pilot on a MB339-A aircraft before graduating to a McDonnel Douglas A-4 Skyhawk in October 1984.

In 1994, Affendi was chosen for the MiG-29 team and was one of the pioneers in inducting the aircraft into the RMAF’s operational capacity.

He was also one of the founders of RMAF’s MiG-29 aerial acrobatics team — the Smokey Bandits.

Affendi then furthered his studies at the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies at the Defence College in Australia.

In December 2009, he was promoted as a brigadier general and appointed operations and exercise director general at the Air Operations Command Base.

At the end of 2010, he took a one-year course at the Royal College of Defence Studies in the UK.

Upon his homecoming that same year, Affendi was promoted as a major general and as a lieutenant general in July 2014. A year later, he was appointed as deputy chief of the Air Force.

He was promoted as the 18th chief of the Air Force on Dec 21, 2016, replacing General Tan Sri Roslan Saad.