Boko Haram: We must stop depending on foreign arms –CDS

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Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Gabriel Olonisakin, said yesterday that Nigeria can no longer depend entirely on foreign military arms supplies to fight Boko Haram and other insurgency. He said the nation must develop its local arms production and be self-sufficient to adequately defend its territorial integrity.
General Olonisakin said there was  the need for Nigeria to immediately embark on the development of local production of weapons to fight Boko Haram and tackle other acts of terrorism.
He said, “fighting insurgency, presently we don’t have the wherewithal and that is why we are encouraging Research and Development so that we can be self-reliant in our production and in no distant future, we will get there.
“We will reach out to local manufacturers to make sure that we inculcate them into the whole arrangement. Funding is usually an issue you have in any project, but if you are determined and focused, you will get along, Research and Development is not a one day issue, it is a gradual issue so as the funds come in, we will begin to improve on which ever project we are into, the CDs said.”
He spoke to journalists  after the opening of  the Nigerian Air Force seminar, titled,  “Maximising potentials for self-reliance in the NAF through innovation and local partnership.” Service chiefs and the Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai agreed with Gen Olonisakin at the NAF Research and Development Seminar, 2015 where the Air Force Strategic Plan (2015-2030) was unveiled yesterday.
He also spoke on why countries with nuclear powers have been able to tame terrorism to some extent, pointing out that “nuclear energy is another form of energy as it were, so for us as a nation,we have all the institutions that have been put in place by government to develop our nuclear energy. In Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, there is a centre for nuclear development which are outlets to make sure that we develop our nuclear capabilities”.
Governor el-Rufai, who was represented by his Deputy, Mr Barnabas Baba Bantex, said, “with the insurgency in the North-East, you have enormous responsibilities for internal security”, pointing out that “NAF, being an arm of the Armed Forces, deserves greater support… in as much as we appreciate your exploits in the North-East, we are grateful on the contribution of the NAF in our joint security forces against cattle rustlers, initiated by the Kaduna State Government.”

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