CONCEPT NOTE FOR THE MARITIME DISCOURSE TAKING PLACE DURING THE PRESIDENTIAL FLEET REVIEW 2023
1. Presidential Fleet Reviews (PFRs) are traditional events with which navies across the world honour their sovereigns or heads of government during their tenure of office. It involves assemblage of ships and other maritime assets at pre-designated area for the purpose of demonstrating loyalty and allegiance to the State. The review equally assures a nation of its navy’s preparedness in collaboration with other navies to meet statutory obligations in maritime security, safety and defence. In keeping with this tradition, the NN is organizing a PFR to honour the C-in-C whose tenure of office elapses in May 23. The President would be expected to review the fleet at anchorage positions and also commission the newly acquired ships and the AW109SP helicopter among other activities during the event.
2. The theme of the PFR-2023 is ‘Fleet Readiness for National Prosperity’. The theme is carefully conceptualized to depict and underscore the essence of a responsive naval fleet and its value/contributions towards the attainment of national prosperity. On the sideline of the PFR, a Maritime Discourse is being organized to further highlight the workings of the various components of NN Fleet readiness and how they are sequenced to deliver NN operational objectives for enhanced national prosperity. This consideration derives from the understanding of the interactions of the triune factors of the Man, representing the crew; the Machine, representing the various platforms, and the Process, which encapsulates doctrine and strategy. The discourse will zero in on the ways, the hows and the means of projecting NN’s current and future scales of effort to build a robust fleet that is ever ready to carry out its constitutional roles and implied tasks, in conjunction with other government agencies, for the achievement of national prosperity.
3. In order to put the foregoing imperatives into tangible and practical contexts, 4 serving senior officers have been selected to give their perspectives on 4 sub-themes: doctrine/work up, logistics support, fleet maintenance and crew preparedness. Thereafter, select retired senior officers will also be invited to discuss each sub-theme. Furthermore, the heads of navies/coast guards or heads of delegation will be given the opportunity to make comments on any of the sub-themes. Finally, participants at the Maritime Discourse will equally make their contributions. Each of the presenters has 10 minutes, while the discussants have 5 minutes each. The highlights on each of the sub-themes and suggested scopes or focus areas as follows:
a. Fleet Readiness and National Prosperity: Doctrine/Work-Up in Perspective. The entrenchment of sound doctrines/principles and regular work ups of ships/crew are prominent features of a virile fleet. This is because doctrines/work ups form the basis for the application of policy/strategy to achieve operational imperatives of the fleet. In this light, this sub-theme interrogates the utility and effectiveness of existing NN doctrine and work up exercise vis-à-vis the attainment of a high state of readiness for NN fleet. The suggested scope/areas of focus is “Forecasting and imperatives of the application of sound doctrine and work up exercises for enhanced fleet readiness in the light of best practices”.
b. Fleet Readiness for National Prosperity: Logistics Support in Perspective. A key requirement of fleet readiness is the sustainment of naval platforms through a robust logistics support plan. This sets the tone to discuss the nexus between logistics support and NN Fleet sustainment towards the attainment of fleet readiness. The suggested scope/areas of focus is “Forecasting and imperatives of a robust logistics support to promote fleet readiness in the light best practices”.
c. Fleet Readiness for National Prosperity: Fleet Maintenance in Perspective. It is widely acclaimed that the readiness of naval fleet is inseparable from the subsisting maintenance culture/practices in the navy. Consequently, there is need to interrogate NN fleet maintenance capacity as it affects the readiness of the fleet. The suggested scope/areas of focus is “Forecasting and imperatives of an efficient planned maintenance and repairs towards the attainment of a ready fleet in the light of best practices”.
d. Fleet Readiness for National Prosperity: Crew Preparedness in Perspective. Man has been identified as the most critical factor of production. Imperatively, well skilled and trained human resources are needed to coordinate other factors such as machines and processes. Consequently, there is need to examine the physical, psychological, social and spiritual composition and wellbeing of the crew vis-à-vis their motivation and readiness to perform assigned tasks onboard the various platforms in the NN Fleet. The suggested scope/areas of focus is “Forecasting and imperatives of a well-motivated and mission-ready crew in achieving fleet readiness in the light of best practices”.
NNS THUNDER with Visual Call Sign F90 is an Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV). Her keel was laid in October 1966 at Avondale Shipyard New Orleans United States. She was decommissioned on March 2011 as a United States Coast Guard vessel and transferred to the Nigerian Navy fleet same year. NNS THUNDER has a length of 115.2m with a speed of up to 29 knots and an endurance of 45 days. The Ship has a compliment of 167 personnel. She is commanded by Capt MI Raji.
NNS CENTENARY has a length of 95.5m. She is one of the frigates of the Nigerian Navy. She is an Off-shore Patrol Vessel (OPV) with Visual Call Sign F91. NNS CENTENARY was built on 5 Sep 04 by Wuchan Ship Building Ltd, China. She was commissioned on 19 Feb 15 with a ship’s complement of 78 men. This frigate has actively participated in numerous sea exercises e.g Exercise Obangame Express etc. She is commanded by Capt RE Ekuma.
NNS IKENE with Visual Call Sign P270 is a Fast Crew Supply boat (FSC) which supplies logistics requirement to vessels at sea. She has a length of 40m and a compliment of 89 ratings and 14 officers. The vessel was built by DAMEN Shipyards United Arab Emirates and commissioned on 9 Dec 22. She is commanded by Cdr CP Mezeh.
NNS KADA is a Landing Ship Tank (LST-100). She replaced the decommissioned Landing Ships NNS AMBE and NNS OFIOM. The Ship was built by Damen Shipyards in the United Arab Emirates. She arrived Nigeria on 27 May 22. She can carry 235 troops as well as 18 crew and has a length of 100m. Her primary functions are: Amphibious Operations, Transport and Logistics while her secondary functions are Maritime Security, Humanitarian Aid, Disaster Relief, Search and Rescue (SAR), Mine Counter Measure (MCM) and Hydrographic Survey Operations Support. She is commanded by Capt AO Adoki.
NNS LANA is an auxiliary class hydrographic survey vessel of the NN with Visual Call Sign A499. She was built in 2018 by OCEA SA of France and commissioned on 9 Dec 21. She has a ship’s compliment of 50 men. LANA has an overall length of 60.10m. She is currently involved in the survey of approaches to Lagos waters. The Ship is preparing for Exercise JOPEX and is commanded by Capt AG Abdullahi.
NNS KANO with Visual Call Sign P270 is a Fast Crew Supplier boat (FCS) with a length of 40m. Her primary role is to supply logistics requirements to Ships at sea. The vessel was built by DAMEN Shipyards United Arab Emirates and was commissioned in 2022. It has a compliment of 86 ratings and 14 officers. She is commanded by Cdr AI Yalo.
NNS NGURU was named after a town in Yobe State. She is a Fast Patrol Craft (FPC) with Visual Call Sign P187 built by OCEA France. The vessel was commissioned into the Nigerian Navy fleet in 2018. Her primary role is to fight against illegal fishing activities, anti-smuggling and illegal immigration control, Search and Rescue operations (SAR), fight against piracy, law enforcement operations, pollution control etc. On May 2020 the ship rescued a Chinese fishing vessel HAILUFANG II which was attacked by pirates in the Gulf of Guinea among other successful operations. Her overall length is 35m with a ship’s compliment of 13 crew and 4 supernumerary. She is commanded by Cdr YJ Sado.
NNS IBENO is yet to be commissioned. She is a Seaward Defence Boat (SDB) with Visual Call Sign 5NBD. The Ship was built by Guangzhou Marine Engineering Coorperation. Her overall length is 45.83m with a Ship compliment of 35 men. She is commanded by Capt IC Mabeoku.
NNS ABA with Visual Call Sign P194 is a Fast Patrol Craft of length 35m and speed of 32 knots. She was built by OCEA France and commissioned on 9 Dec 21. NNS ABA is playing a vital role in safe guarding our water ways against piracy, crude oil theft illegal immigration etc. NNS ABA is commanded by Cdr SO Fiyai.
NNS OJI with Visual Call Sign P275 derived its name from the River Oji. She is a 43m Seaward Defense Boat (SDB), the third in its series of Ships locally built by the NN. NNS ANDONI and NNS KARADUWA being the first and second respectively. The Ship was commissioned on 9 Dec 21 alongside 5 other acquired Ships. Prior to the commissioning of the ship, officers and ratings were appointed and drafted respectively as the Ship’s complement to man and fight the ship effectively. The Commanding Officer onboard the Ship is Cdr S Bala.
NNS ANDONI with Visual Call Sign P100 is an indigenous Seaward Defense Boat (SDB) built by Naval Dockyard Limited (NDL) Victoria Island Lagos and was commissioned on 1 Jun 12. The Ship is 31.1m in length and carries a ship compliment of 25 men. NNS ANDONI patrols the coastal areas and has participated in various exercises. She is commanded by Cdr M Gada.
NNS OSUN with Visual Call Sign P191 is a Fast Patrol Boat with a length of 24m. She has a ship compliment of 10 men. Her primary role is to combat piracy, crude oil theft, illegal immigration, Search and Rescue (SAR) among others. The vessel was built by OCEA France and was commissioned in 2020. The Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the boat is Lt Cdr OR Onyoku.
NNS OSE with Visual Call Sign P186 is a Fast Patrol Boat (FPB) with a length of 24m. The vessel was built by OCEA France and was commissioned in 2017. Her primary role is to combat piracy, crude oil theft, illegal immigration, Search and Rescue (SAR) operations among others. On 20 April 2020, OSE rescued mariners aboard a container ship ‘TOMMI RITSCHER’ after it was boarded by pirates. The Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the boat is Lt EN Isiogu.
NNS EKULU with Visual Call Sign P188 was delivered and commissioned in 2018. The vessel is designed to ensure long maritime safety within the EEZ. Her primary role is to fight against illegal fishing activities, anti-smuggling and illegal immigration control, Search and Rescue Operations (SAR), fight against piracy, natural resources and blue economy protection etc. Her overall length is 30m with a ship compliment of 24 men. The Man of War is presently involved in Operation “Da ka ta da barawo”. She is commanded by Cdr AA Akinsanmi
NNS SHIRORO with Visual Call Sign P185 is a Fast Patrol Boat (FPB) with a length of 24m. The vessel was built by OCEA France. She was delivered and commissioned in 2017 as part of the Eastern Fleet and carries a compliment of 4 officers and 71 men. Her primary role is to protect critical oil installations in the Niger Delta as well as joint operations, patrol of ECOWAS maritime zone E, combat piracy, crude oil theft, illegal immigration, Search and Rescue (SAR) operations among others. The Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the boat is Lt Cdr AS Dan
NNS GONGOLA with Visual Call Sign P189 is a Fast Patrol Boat (FPB) with a length of 24m. The vessel was built by OCEA France. She was delivered and commissioned in 2018 as part of the Eastern Fleet. The vessel carries a compliment of 5 officers and 57 men. Her primary role is to protect critical oil installations in the Niger Delta as well as joint operations, patrol of ECOWAS maritime zone E, combat piracy, crude oil theft illegal immigration, Search and Rescue (SAR) operations among others. On 25 Mar 23, NNS GONGOLA rescued MT MONJASA REFORMER and her 10 of 16 man crew which was attacked by pirates in DR Congo. Also, In Aug 22 the vessel was instrumental in the arrest of MT HEROIC EDUN which was ladened with stolen crude oil from the Akpo oil Terminal in Rivers State. The Officer-in-Charge (OIC) of the boat is Lt Cdr E Benard.