Senator Iroegbu in Abuja
The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has sought the assistance of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) in its plan to set up a Research and Development Agency for the Military.
The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Gen. Abayomi Olonisakin, in a statement signed monday by the Col. Kingsley Umoh for the Directorate of Defence Information (DDI), made this request last Wednesday when the leadership of the NSE paid him a courtesy visit at the DHQ, Abuja.
Olonisakin, who is also an Engineer intimated his guests that the Research and Development department of the DHQ is being upgraded to an agency in order to have the capacity to attract proper funding.
He said that the bill for the establishment of the agency was already before the National Assembly.
The CDS insisted that until Nigeria becomes self-reliant in Military technology, it will not be able to do much in warfare.
“When you import everything, you are at the mercy of the manufacturers of the platforms. We must encourage our engineers to be innovative in the areas of ingenious technology. This will make the nation develop faster,”he said.
Earlier, President of the NSE, Mr. Otis Anyaeji, lauded the appointment of an Engineer to the position of the CDS.
Anyaeji congratulated Olonisakin for his appointment and prayed that God will grant him the wisdom, strength and health to carry out the task of looking after the entire Nigeria Defence system.
He urged the CDS to create areas of interaction for the progress of Defence related engineering and also disclosed that there are Military engineers who are yet to register with the NSE and therefore handed over registrations forms to the CDS to that effect.
The NSE president also used the occasion to invite Olonisakin to grace the opening ceremony of its upcoming annual convention in Uyo, Akwa-Ibom State on November 22 of which the CDS promised to be represented at the occasion.
He also commended the feat the Armed Forces had achieved recently in areas of defence engineering leading to the use of drones and local manufacturing of aircraft spare parts.