Wednesday, August 17, 2016, saw the launch of 30 Nigerian-made gun boats in Lagos.
This latest invention from the Nigerian navy is supposed to assist the country in its fight against all sorts of insurgency across the country.
Alongside the 30 Nigerian-made gun boats, were over 40 operational vehicles also produced by the navy to serve the same purpose.
Nigeria has been battling 2 different wings of militancy. There is Boko Haram to worry about and there is the Niger Delta militancy to tackle.
The 8.2 meter gun boats were particularly modified to suit the fight against the Niger Delta militants who have successfully blown up many pipelines in Nigeria.
The group directly and largely contributed to the worsening of the Nigerian economy.
The level of damage inflicted on Nigeria by militant groups has warranted that there be a practical step to square up with the fight against them.
Present at the occasion were high-profile Nigerian personalities such as Minister of State for Defense, Mohammad Dan-Ali, Chief of Naval Staff and Chief of Defence Staff, Gabriel Olonisakin.
“I am hopeful that the boats being launched today would further boost the ongoing patrol efforts in the various rivers and creeks of the country to the immense benefit of the nation’s maritime security.”– Minister of State for Defense, Mohammad Dan-Ali
The minister says that the 30 Nigerian-made gun boats and operational vehicles had fitted weapons as well as anti-ballistic protective features.
Prior to the launch yesterday, the Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok Ete-Ibas, revealed in his welcome address that the gun boats were a modified version of 30 other boats which were launched in Port Harcourt in February.
Ete-Ibas is certain that these inventions will improve navy maritime operations. He, likewise the minister mentioned the ingenuity of the “locally made” option; given the state of the country’s economy.
“The mounting operational challenges in the face of progressively dwindling economy necessitated the navy to explore more cost saving options through local construction of these patrol boats.”
“The cost of production of a unit of the boat is less than half the cost of producing similar boats from overseas.”- Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok Ete-Ibas.