The National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) is set to collaborate with the research and development department of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) in the development of local content in manufacturing of weapons and aircraft component parts.
The collaboration is sequel to President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive on the development of local contents in production and manufacturing of capital goods and equipment.
This was the crux of the discussion when the director of research and development, Nigerian Air Force Headquarters, Air Commodore O. R. Abidoye led his management team, accompanied by his predecessor, Air Commodore A. A. Sule, on a working visit to NASENI headquarters in Abuja.
In his remarks, Abidoye said the reason they were in NASENI was to seek collaboration between the two organizations, pointing out that the synergy would be in the areas of developing local content to manufacture weapons and other military hardware which include aircraft component parts.
“We need to look inward considering the circumstances and situation we found ourselves in the world today. You are aware that procuring weapons and to get aircraft parts are becoming more and more difficult outside the country.
“The air force in its foresight had begun to look inward to meet our technological needs. That’s why we are here to see what NASENI does and also be able to identify where we can collaborate to achieve our technological requirements,” he said.
Abidoye further said NASENI’s quest to produce first made-in- Nigeria helicopter was a welcome development and stressed that that’s another possible area of collaboration because the Nigerian air force has gone far on this particular initiative or drive.
In his response, the executive vice chairman of NASENI, Prof. Mohammed Haruna told the air personnel that they were in the right place as NASENI slogan is ‘ask us first’ and that the agency would identify the possible areas of collaborations between the parties.
Represented by the secretary to the agency, Dr. Olayinka Komolafe, Haruna said the agency was always ready to collaborate with those that have links with our functions. One of the possible areas you will also need NASENI is the maintenance of your equipment and we want to assure you this we can do very well. We have done this for many organizations. They ask us first and they are still asking, he stated. ‘
The NASENI boss added that ceding of our technologies and methods to industries is one of the functions of NASENI, as many of the end products of NASENI research have been ceded to industries.
He said a technical committee would be set up consisting of personnel from the two organizations to harmonise all previous MOUs between NASENI and NAF and to also explore other frontiers of collaborations between the parties.