September 30, 2021

Gambo explains reason for Naval base in Kano

The Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo, Thursday gave reason, the Nigerian Navy instituted a Naval base in Kano.

Gambo during an Open Ears Conference 2 averred that the Naval base in Kano was purely for administrative and operational reasons.

Explaining how it was moved from Owerrinta, somewhere within Aba and Owerri, Gambo said: “Let me use this opportunity to clarify that what the navy established in Kano is a logistic college. The granted logistics college have thrown up lots of reactions but it has also given us the opportunity to shed some light on our establishment across the nation and some of the programs that we have as far as developing capacity and civil authority in Nigeria is concern.

“For clarity, the Nigerian Navy has a Finance and Logistics college in Owerrinta, somewhere within Aba and Owerri. This College is responsible of training of personnels in the area of logistics and finance.

“But due to the growth and development imperatives, it was considered that the colleges should be separated and the logistics college is now move to Kano.

“ So what is established in Kano is logistics college and the finance college remain in Owerrinta. Before now, Owerrita is not only the land-lock location with a naval establishment. We also had provost and regulatory school in Makodi where we train our personnel in the area of Naval provost duties.

“I will also like to clarify that it is not only these basis that marked our presence in the North, the Nigerian Navy is deeply involved in the anti-insurgency, terrorism and also in the internal security operations across the North.

“In the North-East we have a joint taskforce, Operation Hadin Kai, the Navy has over 170 personnels that are fighting alongside the Army, and the Air-force to combat the threats that we face. Equally in the North-West where we have a joint task force on Operation Hadarin Daji, the Navy has more than 250 persons that are fighting to counter banditry and other issues of insecurity there.

 In the North-central, we also have about 100 men working alongside our colleagues to combat banditry, kidnapping, and all the issues relating to insecurity. Operation save corridor, they are responsible for the management of surrendered terrorists and bandits are working alongside other government agencies. The Navy also is represented there.

“We have about 15 personnels working there. We also have our presence in operation save heaven, operation going on in the plateau. Then Southern Kaduna to combat issues relating to herders and farmers clashes. So it is not just Kano that we are present in the North, for about 10 years, we have been in the North-East. And since operations started in the North-West, we have been there. In the North-Central (Plateau) we have been there and all areas where we have security challenges.

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Like the Chief of defence Staff explained, beyond defending the territorial integrity of Nigeria, the Armed forces of Nigeria have the responsibility to offer support to the civil authority to maintain law and order and this secondary role, the Armed forces have been doing everything to develop the capacity but of course law and order is in the capacity of the government and we are working closely not just with the government, but with other security agencies and the civil society to deliver the much desired security in the country.

“Let me also add that the logistic college established in Kano, was established alongside two Naval bases that would be performing full maritime operations at the Oguta lake, the Nigerian Navy is establishing a forward operating base because of increasing activities of IPOB and ESN as we as sabotage of our oil and Gas facilities and we are working alongside other agencies in the area to combat these threats. Also in Lagos,the Lekki axis, the Nigeria Navy is also establishing a base.

“Lekki is a stretch that hosts a lot of investments critical to the economic well-being of Nigeria. The petrol we consume in Nigeria land in Lagos offshore and it is from there that it is transferred to other parts for consumption across the length and breath of Nigeria. Significantly, the Dangote refinery is coming on string. It’s not just a refinery, it’s coming with a Fertilizer Plant. And there are several development along that corridor worth billions of Dollars that requires protection. So the Navy also is establishing a base to attend to these. Mr. Richard also alluded to the fact that the base is motivated by the need to do something for his State.

“It’s just a coincidence that the chief of Naval State is from Kano State. But nation building is part of the role and responsibility of the Nigerian Navy. Serving in the Navy are Nigerians from the 36 States and the federal capital territory and if there is any thing that we can do to a sense of belonging not just by these men that have volunteered to serve their country but others that are still there and can enhance security, the Nigerian Navy would not shy away from doing that. But of course, the Naval establishment in Kano was established for purely administrative and operational reasons. It is to give vent to proper development of the two colleges.

“One responsible for finance, which is being retained at Owerrinta, and the other responsible for logistics that base would also offer support to the Naval operation that are already ongoing in the North. The operations in the North-West currently are being supported operations down South from Lokoja, from Abuja and sometimes from Lagos. The operations in the North-West, and other areas would greatly be enhanced.”