A Nigerian Air Force C130 Hercules in Kaduna, Nigeria waits to convey troops to Mali

A Nigerian Air Force C130-H30 Hercules plane in Kaduna, Nigeria waits to convey troops to Mali

* (25)4K 7FA APC 1981Incl 2 ARV, 2 CP and 2 ambulance version

* 70 4K-7FA 1982-1983 Incl 15 mortar carriers, CP and ambulance version and 4 ARV

* 54 AML-60/90 Armoured car 1980-1981AML-60 and AML-90 version

*18 M-3 VTT APC 1980-1981 several versions

* 70 AML-60/90 Armoured car 1982

* 16 Roland Mobile SAM system 1982 (delivered 1984-1985). Roland-2 SAM (300) for Roland SAM systems

* 12 Alpha Jet Trainer/combat 1981-1982 DM150 m deal

* 2 Do-28D Skyservant Light transport ac(1980)

*16 Do-128 Light transport ac 1982 (delivered 1984-1986)

* 12 Alpha Jet Trainer/combat ac 1983 (delivered 1985-1986)

* 3 Do-228 Light transport ac 1983(delivered 1985-1988) Incl 1 Do-228-100 and 2 Do-228-200 version; incl 2 for VIP transport

* 5 G-222 Transport aircraft 1982 (delivered 1984-1985) $117m deal

* 25 Palmaria 155mm Self-propelled gun 1982(delivered1983-1986)

* 2 Lerici MCMV ships 1983(delivered 1987-1988) $100 m deal;

* 12 MB-339A Trainer/combat ac 1983(delivered 1984-1985)$82m deal; MB-339AN version

* 2 F-27 Maritime MP aircraft ac 1982 (delivered 1986)

* (48) FH-77 155mm towed gun ac 1982 (delivered 1983-1985)

* (70)Piranha APC (1980)1980-1981 6-wheeled and 8-wheeled version

* 75 AT-105 Saxon APC(1980) (delivered 1980-1982)

* 5 Bulldog Trainer aircraft 1980 (delivered 1982) Bulldog-123 version

* 3 Lynx ASW helicopter 1981 (delivered 1985) $20 m deal; Lynx Mk-89 version

* 36 MBT Mk-3 Tank 1981 (delivered 1984-1985)$115 m deal

* 5 MBT Mk-3/ARV 1981 (delivered 1983-1985)Part of $115 m deal

* 6 MBT Mk-3 VAB ABL 1981(delivered 1983-1985)Part of $115 m deal

* (200)Blowpipe Portable SAM 1982 (delivered 1983-1984)$28 m deal

* 49 Stormer APC(1982)(delivered 1982-1983)

* 18 Jaguar-S FGA aircraft 1983 (delivered 1984-1985) Incl 5 Jaguar-BN version

* (100)Swingfire Anti-tank missile 1983(delivered 1984-1985)

* 3 C-130H-30 Hercules transport aircraft 1983(delivered 1985)

* 15 Hughes-300/TH-55 Light helicopter(1983)300C version

* (30)ZSU-23-4 Shilka SPAAG (1980)



About beegeagle

BEEG EAGLE -perspectives of an opinionated Nigerian male with a keen interest in Geopolitics, Defence and Strategic Studies
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  1. Yagazie says:

    Wow !!! President Shagari for all his faults really splashed out on our millitary in terms of hardware acquisition. A lot of the stuff we are still using today. Hope President GEJ will borrow a leaf from this and do the same.

  2. beegeagle says:

    πŸ™‚ Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari..a man-and-half.

    Gentlemen, granted that there were many repeat orders for some systems, such as Steyr APCs, Vickers tanks, Bofors 155mm towed arty, Palmaria 155mm SP arty, Dornier Do-228 planes, some of these repeat orders and deliveries continuing into the 1990s and 2000s, THIS represents the legacy of the Shagari years, specifically orders placed and/or deliveries made between 1980 and 1983 alone.

    Compared to how slow the roll has been fourteen years after our current democratic incarnation commenced, is it any wonder that our expectations seem to be set so high?

    I mean, even when a young General Gowon placed orders for MiG 21MF jets in 1974, he asked to be sold 25 fighters and 6 trainers in one hop – 31 airframes.

    Where did we learn this habit of acquiring attack helicopters in alarming PAIRS and TRIADS? wa o.

  3. beegeagle says:

    By the way, Obasanjo tried. The logs show that between 1977 and 1979, he placed orders for 50 T55 tanks, 55 Fox scout cars, about two-thirds of our fleet of 150 Scorpion light tanks, 20 MBB Bo-105 light helicopters, 10 BM-21 122mm rocket artillery systems, 15 SA330 Puma helics and a formidable array of naval ships which were almost entirely delivered during the Shagari years – NNS Aradu, two Mk.9 corvettes, three Lurssen FPB 57 missile FACs, three Combattante III missile FACs, two LSTs, among other systems.

    We acknowledge his formidable second-best legacy.

  4. anas says:

    Alh shehu Shagari is a veri gud man who meant well 4 this country but unfortunately he sorrounded himself with mean crooks lik umaru dikko and co .

  5. Obix says:

    A legacy indeed! He is the only former president / head of state, who deserves a statue while alive. I hope to add GEJ to this list in the future. @oga anas, you are right, Alhaji Shagari and the late Musa Yar’adua were exceptional leaders surrounded by monsters. Let us remember that those were peaceful times yet these purchases were made. It still doesn’t penetrate my brain why at these times of insurgency, piracy and oil bunkering our brave men and women of the armed forces are fighting in civilian jeeps, without neccessary airframes and sea platforms!!!” Please, somebody should wake me up from this terrible dream! 😦

    • beegeagle says:

      Indeed, Shehu Shagari and Umaru Yar’Adua were very decent and modest fellows as Presidents and I have nothing but the highest degree of respect for them.

      Shagari’s problem arose from the fact of haven allowed his son-in-law, Umaru Dikko, to install himself as the gateway to the President’s Office. He and his wingmen, Ibrahim Tahir and Suleiman Takuma of blessed memory and Uba Ahmed, effectively derailed that regime with their power-drunken antics.

      Yar’Adua’s albatross was his own wife, Turai :). Oh, what a power monger she was. It was incredible really.

  6. beegeagle says:

    It is amazing the length we sometimes go to justify the indefensible. Someone has asked a question ‘what happened to them?’ – implying that it was possibly a wrong thing which Shagari did? That is uncharitable in the extreme. Almost sounds like being in denial to be exact.

    Let us start from the very beginning.Look at the photo on this thread – a C130H-30 flying Nigerian Army troops out to Mali in January 2013. They were at work throughout the ECOMOG years as well. A G222 flew NAF SF commandos into Niger for the same MISMA-related deployment in Jan 2013. Alpha Jets were also deployed for the same mission in Jan 2013 and more importantly, attacked rebel bases in NE Nigeria in May 2013. They were at work in Bakassi and logged up thousands of sorties during the ECOMOG years. Go on, check our archives and see all the photos you need to see then come back and tell me it ain’t so?

    Moving on, the 700 ton MCMVs are right now being reconfigured to serve as patrol vessels while Dornier planes continue to crisscross our skies. Panhard AML 60/90 AFVs, MOWAG APCs and Shilka SPAAGs did heavy work for a decade during the ECOMOG wars and are still serving us as we write this.

    Vickers Mk.III Eagle tanks, Palmaria SP arty, Stormer(read Spartan) APCs, Bofors field arty – do we not see them all the time?

    In the face of the purported paucity of resources and seeing the extent to which many of these systems have been flogged in 2013, I am loathe to imagine what would have happened if these assets were not available to the services.

    Be that as it may, we need not forget that the acquisitions were too slanted towards one part of the world – the West; and we later paid a very heavy price for that when sanctions were imposed against Nigeria in the 1990s.

    As for the Jaguar jet deal,it was a fiasco. There is nothing else to add to that insofar as there are Jaguar jets which have not logged up 100 hours yet are parked in perpetuity at NAF air bases.

    The MB339s, downed early on by sanctions and used sparingly, have been put through a midlife upgrade by Alenia, upgraded to the contemporary CD variant. Or the MOPOL are not using ’em Saxon APCs as we write this?

    So where is the slightest hint of misapplication of funds to be gleaned from the foregoing? In our moment of sobriety, we should be thankful for what that man did. That is what our military history and records of deployment tell us.

    Let us prioritise and do the needful within the limits of the considerable resources available to us. Every Senator and Member of the House of Representatives needs to find himself a more well-grounded Legislative Aide.

    In the realm of defence and security,most of their aides are profoundly clueless. That was why a Senator uttered the gaffe that was ‘what of the MiGs at Makurdi?’ (this in 2010) whilst on escapist mode as he sought to maneouvre around the serious issue of re-equipping our forces.

    Apparently, he was referring to MiGs paid for by the Gowon regime in 1974, which in every country with the financial resources available to Nigeria, should be museum relics – 36 years after. Thank God that they are no longer in NAF service – for our own good o.

  7. beegeagle says:

    Let us be truthful to ourselves. Someone needs to replicate the absolutely lofty standards set by that man, Shagari. The systems which his government acquired for Nigeria are not going to and cannot remain in service forever.

    Even at that time, there were competing demands.

  8. beegeagle says:

    For those who do not realise what Shagari’s legacy has meant for Nigeria, here we go


    Tavor rifle-wielding ground troops of the Nigerian Air Force board a G222 plane enroute Niamey

    Tavor rifle-wielding ground troops of the Nigerian Air Force board a G222 plane enroute Niamey

    Nigerian Air Force Alpha Jet pilot prepares to jet out to Niger enroute Mali theatre of operations



    Nigerian Air Force Alpha Jet at Lungi Airport, Sierra Leone. 1999

    Nigerian Air Force Alpha Jet at Lungi Airport, Sierra Leone. 1999


    Nigerian ECOMOG soldiers drive through the streets of war-torn Monrovia in a MOWAG Piranha APC, 22nd April 1996

    Nigerian ECOMOG convoy in Monrovia, 19-22 April, 1996. Bringing up the rear is a Shilka SPAAG, also deployed this minute in N.E Nigeria


    A quad-barreled ZSU-23-4 Shilka Self Propelled Anti Aircraft Gun – ‘hero’ of the ECOMOG campaigns 1990-2000. Excellent infantry support weapon when fired in flat trajectory, say ECOMOG veterans.


    Panhard AML 60 armoured car – probably the first photo of any unit seen since the late 1980s


    Steyr 4K-7FA tracked APCs


    Oto Melara Palmaria 155mm self-propelled artillery

    Panhard M3 Armoured Personnel Carriers..possibly the first-ever photo of these systems in Nigerian service

    Panhard AML 60 Armoured Fighting Vehicles

    Alvis Spartan tracked APCs

    Bofors FH77B 155mm field howitzer


    A Vickers Mk.III Eagle tank at the Victor Kure Firing Range,Armoured Corps Centre,Bauchi 17 May 2012

    A Vickers Mk.III Eagle tank at the Victor Kure Firing Range,Armoured Corps Centre,Bauchi 17 May 2012

    Men of the MOPOL 10 SQUADRON on the move in a Saxon APC in Bauchi, NE Nigeria

    Men of the MOPOL 10 SQUADRON on the move in a Saxon APC in Bauchi, NE Nigeria

    • Donspony says:

      Here’s a video of Buhari negotiating for likely MKIII battle tanks in 1982 during Shagari’s regime.

      • beegeagle says:

        You are in form, my brother πŸ™‚

        The Buhari and Babangida regimes did take delivery of Vickers tanks which their governments placed orders for.
        Buhari, as of 1981, was GOC 3 Armoured Division, so he and Babangida, his immediate junior and long-time Commander of the Armoured Corps would have been central to the negotiations of all the AFVs+tanks acquired in 1980-83 when they were Brigadiers and later Major Generals(Buhari elevated 1982, IBB elevated March 1983). Expectedly, Buhari and Babangida belonged to the Armoured Corps.

        When he later took power, Buhari’s regime negotiated the sale of 36 Mk.III tanks+5 ARVs+6 ABLs in 1985. These were delivered in 1985 and 1986. He placed an order for 24 Albatross jets which were delivered after he had been ousted from power, in 1986-87. Finally, the Buhari regime in 1984, placed an order for 75 additional units of Steyr 4K-7FA APCs which were delivered 1984-86.

        Babangida’s regime acquired Panhard VBLs, Panhard Sagaie AFVs, Super Puma helics, Dornier Do-228-212s and all 75 units of EE-9 Cascavel AFVs (ac 1992/delivered 1994). It also acquired APR 21 122mm MRLs/130mm long-range arty/152mm arty. Finally, the Babangida regime acquired 64 additional units of Vickers Mk.III MBTs in 1990 and these were delivered in 1992-94 at a cost of US$282 million.

  9. beegeagle says:

    The foregoing suggests that we are not only benefitting from that legacy TILL DATE, we are due for a major upgrade. Military power requires consistent reinvestment.

    Like I said earlier on, we cannot rely on these systems forever and even when they were acquired, Nigeria endured ‘competing demands’. So that excuse is now untenable. We cannot continue to regurgitate that old wives tale, ad infinitum.

    30 years ago, the Shagari regime placed a US$100 million order for a pair of Mine Countermeasure Vessels. They were delivered around 1988. It is because they have been very sparingly used(perhaps 80% new – thanks/no thanks to 1990s era sanctions)that we have the luxury of converting them to patrol vessels today. Those were peaceful times but they were probably acquired in case racist South Africa of that era decided to come and lay mines in our waters. That means, they were acquired on the strength of fathomable threats.

    Why do we find it so hard today, with so many REAL threats onshore and offshore, to acquire MRAPs for CTCOIN troops or LPDs for the Navy? For that same sum of US$100 million, we can get 150 brand-new GILA MRAPs and 100 factory-refurbished Casspir MRAPs. For the Navy, it can get us two LPDs?

    Are we absent-minded, asleep or lethargic in the face of so many security threats and challenges?

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