Palmaria 155mm SP artillery of the Nigerian Army

Palmaria 155mm SP artillery of the Nigerian Army

29 June, 2013
By Stella Odueme-Omona

The Nigerian Army (NA) commenced the 2013 Nigerian Army Day Celebration(NADCEL) on June 28, in Abuja, with the
assurance that it has provided an enabling environment for democracy to flourish in the country.

Addressing journalists on Friday, Chief of
Army Staff (COAS), Lt Gen Onyeabo Ihejirika, said the week-long event with
the theme: “Enhancing the NA Capacity
Building Efforts Towards Improved
National Security,” would afford the NA the opportunity to relate with the larger
society by collaborating with it on the
maintenance of law and order as well as
security of lives and property.

The COAS, who spoke through Major-General Bolaji Koleosho, also noted that
the celebration keys into Nigeria’s Centenary celebration hence it is holding in Abuja instead of Bauchi State. “It is an occasion meant to showcase NA roles, capabilities and its modest achievements in the last one year,” he stated.

He said the highpoints of the ceremony
would be physical training agility display/paratrooper jumps, war dog display and
presentation of COAS commendation
awards to deserving officers and soldiers,to be witnessed by President Goodluck Jonathan and other dignitaries.

He outlined some activities for the celebration to include a Juma’at prayers
at Mogadishu Cantonment on Friday,
sanitation exercise by all formations
today(Saturday) and an interdenominational church service at the All Saints Anglican Protestant Church, Mogadishu Cantonment, Abuja,on Sunday.

Others are a courtesy call by COAS to the
Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister,
Senator Bala Mohammed, the commissioning of the Nigerian Army
Officers Wives Association (NAOWA)
Nursery and Primary School at Kurudu, Abuja, a free medical outreach at
Government Girls Secondary School,Abuja, and a combat march/NA equipment display on July 6 at Eagle Square, among others.



About beegeagle

BEEG EAGLE -perspectives of an opinionated Nigerian male with a keen interest in Geopolitics, Defence and Strategic Studies
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Donian007 says:

    Hope our journalists won’t let us down. We need to see nice pictures of our heroes doing their thing. UP NA!

  2. Henry says:

    I hope the army would release photos this time around. Instead of turning people into photo thirsty hounds, like they did last year.

  3. beegeagle says:

    They should concentrate on each and every system on display – providing full view photos of whatever gun-truck, scout car, APC, AFV, tank, artillery piece and anything else on display. Let us see the newly upgunned and uparmoured Pinzgauer All Terrain Vehicles, the Stallion Surveillance System built by 51 Div Signals.

    All too often, our photographers have absolutely no sense of what amounts to a big occasion and could very well go there and be shooting less serious photos of NAOWA members tying nice ‘gele’

    Please, FULL focus has to be on the hardware systems on display, the War Dog Unit action and paratroop jumps. Everything else, bar the marchpast, will be a highlight of secondary importance. It is a military event. Let us keep the photos militarised.

    Imagine the other day when the C-in-C commissioned seven Bell 412/429 helics and thirty three MRAPs/armoured carriers for the Police. Not one journalist, not even the NTA thought it important to turn the camera lens for ten seconds each on the choppers and armoured vehicles. It was a profound fiasco as far as qualitative media coverage goes. Oh,that was one sad day.

    To be sure, we are able to say these because we have been given an opportunity to cover a military event (God bless the SBS commandos) and we made it a global scoop without any prompting whatsoever. In one go, we brought FIRST PHOTOS of three hardware systems

    – a Bell Jet Ranger helicopter
    – a NC27 Night Cat stealth interceptor
    – a RIBForce 7.8 Pro RHIB

    So we who offer so much are entitled to expect so much. If NA ask us to do this and provide the logistical support, we shall do so with panache and gusto..with enough photos and qualitative content to syndicate to the local media and even for the NA website.

    For the avoidance of doubt, we still retain and are expanding on the advantage that is our global visibility and as such that would be made available to further boost the NA’s PR efforts. That is complementarity.

  4. ifiok umoeka says:

    Say it again sir

  5. tim says:

    The Nigerian Army made an order for 48 Archer Artillery systems in 2008………. How true is this statement?

  6. beegeagle says:

    Error on the part of logsters.

    What we had in the beginning were 24 units of the older (39 calibre?)FH77A. We have since piled on 48 units of the newer(52 calibre?) FH77B. I suspect that the NA realised the value of the Bofors system after the benchmark artillery duels which sufficed between Pakistan M46/Type 59 130mm long-range artillery and Indian Bofors 155mm artillery during the Kargil War of 1999, high up in the mountains.

    The 130mm long range gun, which we also own units of, is a an artillery classic anyday – as are the ZU-2 23mm AA and the D30 122mm pieces – but the Bofors 155mm artillery apparently carried the day.

    Not long afterwards, the NA got 48 units of the FH77B and eighteen units of Oto Melara 105mm arty as well.

    • tim says:

      So we have 72units of this 155mm?……… I think it is time we swapped our palmaria,for something more advanced….at least something with a modern fire control system…… Or find someone to do an upgrade.

  7. beegeagle says:

    122 units (plus Palmaria). Doziex it was who once averred that the Palmaria is an Italian upgrade of the hugely successful American M109 Paladin. It is a good system.

    Look out for the inimitable Koalitsja(coalition), a Russian beast with two 152mm barrels poised one on top of the other like a double barrel rifle. Incredible.

  8. beegeagle says:

    Going forward, two good bets for towed and SP 155mm arty

    – the alloy M777 (read about that)

    – the PLZ 45 SP arty(NORINCO, China), which beat Western designs to a maiden Kuwaiti deal and has since been snapped up by Saudi Arabia and Algeria.

  9. beegeagle says:

    BTW, there can be no telling what upgrades there might have been on the Palmaria. 27 units were in service as of 1994. The rest were quietly delivered post-2000.

  10. ifiok umoeka says:

    That one is one beast with a rate of fire 2nd to non. But I’ll go with an upgraded palmaria with the volcano extended range precision ammo. Also consider the german pzh 2000

  11. beegeagle says:

    “Does Nigeria have MLRS?” This dumb 🙂 question appears on my wall everyday.MRLS..not like we are talking S300s here?

    YES, we do own both towed and SP MRL systems. Minus the BM-21 122mm rocket artillery system, Nigeria acquired the following heavy artillery systems from Romania

    5 units of APR 21 122mm MRLs – 1992
    11 units of APR 21 122mm MRLs – 1993

    Field Artillery
    4 units of 130mm artillery – 1992
    7 units of 130mm artillery – 1993
    4 units of M81/M85 152mm arty – 1993


    A 2001 report by the ISS put the holdings of 122mm MRLs at 30 units, with a finally tally of 25 APR-21s and 5 BM-21s

    Moving on, we also operate a little known MRL – the AVIBRAS SBAT-70 ASTROS 70mm MULTIPLE ROCKET LAUNCHER which seems ideal for CTCOIN operations in uninhabited areas

  12. beegeagle says:

    There was a p’rade which I saw on TV in the early 1990s when IBB was the Head of State. A Palmaria rolled by and the Major who was assisting NTA with the commentaries noted that, ‘the standard round’ used by these Nigerian Palmaria can hit targets 50 kilometres away. That is no mean range at all. I believe he was talking about some rocket-assisted projectile.

    Again, I remember looking at the barrel of the Palmaria and feeling like one could get sucked into it…even from a TV screen. It did look cavernous..really huge

  13. ifiok umoeka says:

    Oga abeg forgive the fellow. But then when I saw astro, my mind went to the monstrous ASTRO II (127 x 32, 180 x 16, 300mm x 4) which the Iraqis used with gr8t effect in the 80s. But this baby ASTRO could be be mated to our 13 – 17m boats with laser/optics guidance package from Israel (they have one on their super Dvaro III). I wander if it could be fitted with laser kits. However, I thought that the Chinese WS2 was the most powerful multi launch rocket system (ATACMS is SSM)

  14. beegeagle says:

    BM-30 SMERCH, a 300mm MRLS is the most powerful on the planet. Made in Russia.

  15. beegeagle says:

    Meanwhile, the Chinese have their own ‘response’ to the BM-30. It is called the A100.

    The A100 has a range of 100km while the BM30 has a 90km range. The A100 promises to provide direct competition for the BM-30 as it is said that “although the system resembles the Russian Smerch 9K58 300 mm rocket system, it is not a copy of the Smerch as previously speculated. The A-100 rocket is fitted with a simple guidance system for greater accuracy.”

    Greater accuracy! The Chinese are coming. The A100, once dismissed by some loudmouth Western analyst as an ‘inferior analogue copy of the BM-30″ 🙂 is in service with Pakistan, Morocco…and Tanzania!

    One more thing. China are simulateously making inroads into Morocco and Algeria. Morocco have bought 36 A100s in response to Algeria’s 18 BM-30s. They have also settled for the MBT-2000, ahead of plucky competitors.

    For their part, Algeria have snapped up a 5,500 ton training ship armed with AShMs and SAMs, PLZ45 155mm SP arty and have an order in place for F22A frigates and some corvettes – possibly the highly automated Type 056 corvette.

    • Number one says:

      Talking of the F22A frigates for a billion dollars we could get 8 of those and 2 type 053 frigates free.(P.S just a guesstimate. )

  16. ifiok umoeka says:

    Well, the WS2 is a 400mm x 6 system with an over 200km range and the sudanese are said to have it. A version is said to have been deployed on the Chinese side of the Taiwanese strait with guidance system aimed at Taiwanese radar. Its said that the system is so effective that the Chinese are replacing their earlier SRBM aimed @ Taiwan. Tube rather than rail launched, the 7.3m/ 1285kg rocket has a warhead of 200kg and range of between 200km and 350km. That’s mean. Checkout for fotos
    On another note see what the Sudanese have done with their D30 122mm in the form of the khalifa (propelled by a kamAZ 6×6). Others like the Serbs,Kazakh and Chinese have done similar things and I wonder why our. Over 200 D30s can’t be born again.

  17. ifiok umoeka says:

    Also checkout the UAE jobaria (monster) and though its 122mm, it will shock you at how it can ‘landscape’ hahaha.

  18. Number one says:

    My wish list for the army will be 2 battalions each of the T-155 sp arty(Turkey) quite cheap too and the archer from Sweden/Norway.

  19. Number one says:

    Not forgetting Norinco’s SH1 truck mounted 155mm arty.

  20. beegeagle says:

    @Number One. As of now, the best deal I know of as far as the F22 frigates go is a $700 million contract for four frigates and four Z-9EC anti-sub warfare helics.

    China EXIM will finance so we can buy and pay later. So we need to get off that dead line about competing demands and see how we can get a pair of those frigates+helics and a pair of Type 056 corvettes in a $500m swoop. On that, we can tie in a free Type 53H2 frigate.

    The suggested swoop on decommissioned Freemantle long-range patrol craft(8) can be paid for – including refurbishment costs for $35 million – by the NNPC while the FG snap up the German Type 122 frigates in an extrabudgetary transaction.

  21. beegeagle says:

    Bless you, my brother. That is a majorly serious weapon. A jaw dropping 53km range.

  22. doziex says:

    Yeah gentlemen, the palmaria can hold it’s own with other major systems out there.

    This spruced up Italian version of the paladin, presents a menacing figure.

    I remember how menacing Gaddafis forces with T-72s, bm-21s and palmaria’s looked as they bore down on Benghazi.

    This was the battle to finish the opposition once and for all. But thanks to French Rafales, and USMC Harriers, these Palmaria’s and tanks were turned into an armored junk yard.

    As Nato hunted and bombed Libya’s arsenal, some palmaria’s and other heavy equipment were just driven so far into the desert away from the coast, that nato saw no threat in them, and lost interest in bombing them.

    Word is that most of Libya’s gaddafi era arsenal is flying off the shelf on the arms black market.

    Sudan was said to be particularly interested in gaddafi’s Bm-21 mbrl arsenal.

    So why wouldn’t Nigeria have a similar interest ?, at least in the surviving palmaria guns of which Nigeria and Libya are 2 of a handful of users of this system .

  23. beegeagle says:

    New armed helicopter option: BELL 407GT

  24. ifiok umoeka says:

    Looks like (or it replacement) what the US pairs with the apache. Those birds armed with hellfire (or was it TOWs) dealt the IRGN and the cigar shaped hit and run FACs a bitter blow in was it operation mantis in the 80s. Pretty agile but in the same class with the 109

  25. beegeagle says:

    Brothers, we are familiar with Bell helicopters – thanks to the NN and NPF and the product line has proved to be as durable as any Agusta or Eurocopter. This 8ell 407, developed from the Bell Jet Ranger, is actually smaller than the Agusta A109 and costs less than half as much.

    That said, I am sure that for US$2.5 million, this airframe is netted. If we are the first takers on the Bell 429, thanks to the five units delivered to the NPF, this already proven Bell 407 – not to mention the militarised GT varianr – HAS TO BE on our radar for a triservice asset. Standardisation comes to mind. Think what this would do in NE Nigeria in hot pursuit/search-and-destroy missions against terrorists or against pirates and camps in the Niger Delta. NA need this for their new aviation unit, NN Air Arm need this for littoral and riverine surveillance and attack. NAF need this in lieu of the Bo-105 for an armed light observation helicopter. These would carry five Special Forces commandos plus the crew.

    The other airframe in this price category is the Eurocopter AS-555 Fennec.

  26. Tope says:

    Oga Beeg pls o what happened to the promised Helicopters from Russia and France? We r still waiting for them o.

    2ndly the Sandcat APCs are they yet to be delivered, we really need to make an Official Military Procurement Office which will Scout for the Very best for our Military and also Design Inhouse wit DICON etc.

    Several Helicopters were promised and Zilch we have heard nada since then and also the L15 Falcons when are those goin to be shipped,?

    Oga Beeg i kno it will be a Task but if u can draft up all the updates on Procurement so far to see which Areas the Military are lacking and have nt fulfilled in their 2011,2012 and 2013 Budgets so we can Pray to God for them.

    I don tire to wait to hear Good News o :).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s