For sometime now, there has been a rash of inaccurate statements emanating from international sources as it concerns the manpower strengths of the Nigerian military services. Typically, these figures have been given as Army 60,000(some say 68,000), Navy 7,000 and Air Force 9,000.
However, Beegeagle’s Blog has always insisted that the foregoing figures represent a gross under-estimation of the real figures. Specifically, we quoted the outgone Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General AB Dambazau(rtd) as having stated in an Nigerian Television Authority Network News interview given on the March 2010 day when the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Barracks, a 660-unit affair wholly constructed by Nigerian Army Engineers, was commissioned, that at the time when he took over command of the Nigerian Army in August 2008, the Army had a little over 90,000 troops, the Navy 12,000+ personnel while the Air Force had 13,000+ officers and men.
Well, here comes further proof of what we alluded to, reinforcing our habit of saying what we mean and meaning what we say – whether or not you were there to see or here what we say we did.
This morning, the Flag Officer Commanding Western Naval Command of the Nigerian Navy, Rear Admiral Ameen Ikioda while fielding questions put to him by the crew of Channels Television as it pertains to the forthcoming major fleet evaluation exercise “Ex Farauta” again put the manpower strength of the Nigerian Navy at 15,000 officers and men. This suggests that the personnel strength of the Navy has been under-estimated by international defence communicators by more than 50%.
“(..) Nigerian waters span about
84,000 square nautical miles which
equates to a third of the Nigerian land
mass with a total strength of 15,000 naval officers”
end of quote
Elsewhere, Beegeagle wrote
(February 24, 2012 at 12:37 pm)
Let me touch briefly on some points
which were published online by a defence news website this week. In it, they quoted “Nigeria Intel” and suggested that the Nigerian Army’s strength is 60,000, that of the Navy 7,000 and the Air Force, 9,000.That is mathematically IMPOSSIBLE.
Sometime in March 2010, the outgone
Chief of Army Staff, General Dambazau
while speaking to TV newshounds stated
that as of the time when he assumed
command in 2008, the numerical strength of the Army was 90,000+, the Navy 12,000+ and the Air Force 13,000+. Even as that, the numbers have been
increasing with the proliferation of
conflicts and insurgencies across the
The C-in-C lately directed all defence and security forces to pile on the numbers. So much so that during the last P-O-P of
NAF Short Service officers at the tail end
of last year, the Chief of Air Staff told NTA News that for its next intake, the alloted quota at the 325 Ground Training Group is set to increase from 500 to 1,000 airmen. Bottomline, the forces are growing in numbers as we speak.
Speaking from a standpoint of
experience, the strength of the average
battalion or regiment in combat
formations is 776-850 officers and men
and across brigades and corps, the NA
have over 120 battalions and regiments across all corps and support services. At
least, we saw clips of the last Regimental Sergeant Majors conventions which held in Kaduna and in Jos in 2011 and know how many of them were there for the event.
When you think about the fact that each
brigade has four battalion-sized
formations(including the Brigade HQ
Garrison) and that additionally, each
division is supported by a brigade-sized
Field Engineers formation (known as Div Engineers), an independent recce
battalion, a Signals regiment, ST
battalion, Provost battalion, Base
Ammunition Depot, EME regiment and
Intelligence Group, it is scientifically
IMPOSSIBLE for the figure which the said website quoted to be anywhere near
accurate – particularly viewed against the perspectives offered by a former COAS.
Do not forget that we have not accounted for the troops under Army HQ Garrison or the demo battalions serving the NDA, Depot NA, AFCSC and the troops at 17 training establishments under the
Training and Doctrine Command(TRADOC). In addition to that, you have support services such as the Band Corps,
Chaplaincy and Islamic Directorate,
Education, Physical Training, Medical etc.
So they were wildly off the mark.
Again, the length of Nigeria’s coastline is 853km…not 780km. The road distance
between Lagos and Calabar at both ends
of the coastline may be 780km but for the mariner who has to contend with
indentations along the coast, the oceanic distance is 853 km – exactly the same as Sudan’s length of coastline.
Beegeagle’s Blog…precision+integrity guaranteed