Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, has stressed the need for a self-reliant military that would depend on locally manufactured equipment and be able to effectively confront the nation’s security challenges.
He said the need for the Armed Forces to be self-reliant is informed by the fact that no other nation would be willing to come to our aid in times of need, stressing that Nigeria had experienced hostile response from other countries in the past when it needed their assistance.
Dr Onu said this when the Director of Transformation and Innovation in the Nigeria Army, Major-General Elvis Njoku, paid him a courtesy visit in Abuja.
The minister further said that the attainment of self-reliance by the military will boost the nation’s economy and create jobs for its teeming youths.
He expressed delight with the Mine Resistant Ambush Proof (MRAP) armoured vehicle codenamed ‘Ezeogu Emura,’ which was developed by the Nigerian Army in its battle against insurgency.
Dr Onu said that the armoured vehicle could be improved upon and exported to earn revenue for the country, hoping that Nigerians would soon be able to sell equipment produced in Nigeria to other countries.
The minister then assured the Nigerian Army of the ministry’s support in enhancing its research and innovation endeavours.
He further assured that the ministry was working hard to move the economy away from being dependent on commodity or resource to a knowledge- based one.
Earlier, the Director of Transformation and Innovation in the Nigerian Army, said the army would collaborate and seek further assistance of the ministry for research and development of innovations to help boost its capabilities.
He added that the army, would continue to think out of the box to boost the morale of its personnel and keep up with the latest global practices on military operations.
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