Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, has directed the Federal Ministry of Defence to strategise for the establishment of a modest Military Industrial Complex for the production of domestic weapons, to meet some of the requirements of the Nigerian Armed Forces.
The President made this declaration in Abuja on Friday at the graduation ceremony of the National Defence College, where he condemned the country’s over-dependence on other countries for critical military equipment and logistics.
“We must evolve viable mechanisms for near-self-sufficiency in military equipment and logistics production complemented only by very advanced foreign technologies.
“The Ministry of Defence is being tasked to draw up clear and measurable outlines for development of a modest Military Industrial Complex for Nigeria,” President Buhari said.
Buhari said the decision was made to liaise with other strategic MDAs and industries to re-engineer the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) to meet national military hardware and logistics requirements.
‘Win The War’
He observed that since his administration’s assumption of office, it had reviewed the nature and character of Nigeria’s security threats and challenges.
“We recognised first and foremost, the external dimensions of these threats and the need for international cooperation and common security mechanisms to tackle them,” he said.
President Buhari explained that in the light of this realisation, his Administration was “convinced that the best approach was to work within the framework of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) to mobilise a collective regional effort in the fight against terrorism and insurgency.
The President urged the graduates, officers and men of the Armed Forces to work harder to win the war against the Boko Haram, terrorism and insurgency in Nigeria’s north-east.
“We must apply a comprehensive strategy and coordinate all elements of national power against terrorism and insurgency; we must show result oriented leadership at all levels of military Command; we must set up an optimal organisation to manage and sustain operational performance; and we must show confidence and winning mentality,” Buhari said.
‘Make A Marked Difference’
The President assured Nigerians and the international community that the Federal Government, under his leadership, would strive to meet the operational, logistic, training and welfare requirements of the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
He also reaffirmed his commitment to ameliorating the hardships of people living in areas most affected by insurgency and terrorism.
“We have the will, resolve and conviction to apply a comprehensive strategy and coordinate all elements of national power against terrorism and insurgency,” the President stressed.
Buhari said that the National Defence College had fulfilled the vision of its founding fathers, by becoming a strategic human capacity-building institution, making credible contributions to Nigeria and other friendly countries.
The President urged graduates of the College’s Course 23 to resolve to ‘make a marked difference in your future deployments and contribute your quota to the evolution and implementation of national security, defence and military strategies’.
“You should be the source that lights up the environment wherever you find yourselves,” he said.