Nigerian Navy yesterday in Saint Nazaire, France, took delivery of its first ever purpose built Offshore Survey Vessel, ‘NNS LANA’. At the Flag Transfer Ceremony (FTC), the Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi (rtd), who spoke through the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo, said the vessel was conceived as a replacement to the previous NNS LANA, a survey ship decommissioned about 10 years ago. Magashi, who was the special guest of honour at the event, added that the occasion marked a great milestone in the fulfilment of the dream of not only replacing but enhancing the Navy’s survey capability.
The new vessel is expected to fill the void created following the decommissioning of the previous NNS LANA. Highlighting the importance of having a survey vessel like NNS LANA, the minister said that survey services and charting waterways “play a crucial role” in ensuring safe navigation as well as delivery of maritime security.
He added: “Hence, NNS LANA will not only enhance the safety of Nigeria’s maritime environment but the ship will serve as a critical component in the projection of naval power for enhanced maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea. “It will also play a critical role in the protection of maritime resources and preservation of law and order at sea, thus contributing significantly to the promotion of global maritime commerce.” Magashi lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for his commitment towards the recapitalisation of the Nigerian Navy fleet.