30 March, 2014

DR Akinwunmi Adesina, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, has warned illegal fishing trawlers operating in Nigeria’s waters to stop their activities.

Adesina gave the warning at the
weekend during the inspection of seized vessels by the Nigerian Navy under the supervision of the Federal Department of Fisheries (FDF) in Lagos. The seizure of the vessels, belonging to Mid Atlantic Nigeria Ltd., was ordered by the minister at Brawal ports because the company had not renewed its licence to fish in 2014..

‘’Every vessel in the Nigerian waters must carry along its valid licence to fish in the sea. ‘’It is such companies as Mid Atlantic that drive away our fishermen from our waters and create unemployment. ‘’You must comply with the law because the days of illegal business in our waters are over,” Adesina said.

The minister said that the company was adopting “illegal manner” to fish, leaving just a little for other fishing companies to fish. Adesina said that Mid Atlantic was in the habit of throwing back to the water dead
fishes which was a serious offence. He ordered the arrest of the seven Chinese officers of the company.

Commenting on the arrest, Ms Folake
Areola, Director of FDF, said that the
vessels were asked to go and anchor, but went ahead to fish. Areola said the vessel owners had been charged to court, adding that the penalty for such offence was a fine of 250,000
dollars on each vessel or confiscation of the vessels.

Mrs Bunmi Ogungbe, Chief Fisheries
Officer of FDF, also said that the
company’s licence was supposed to be
renewed every year before they could be allowed to fish.


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. beegeagle says:

    The tough talking has commenced. What this tells me is the imminence of the delivery of some or all of the estimated five units of the 35 metre SENTINEL Fast Multirole Patrol Vessel, complete with RHIBs for board-and-search operations, reportedly paid for by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and intended to be start-up assets for the new Fisheries Protection Squadron of the Nigerian Navy. Watch this space.


    Our military appears to be witnessing real and consequential growth after the doldrums of the decades that were the 1990s and 2000s.

    Good morning, gentlemen.

  2. Yagazie says:

    Oga Beegz- ‘the days of illegal business in our waters are over’ – I am eagerly anticipating the take -off of our naval fisheries patrol squadron when the five units of 35 m Sentinel Multi-role patrol vessels arive. One thing though- given their relatively small size (35 metres)- I hope that they can effectively carry out patrols to the outer limits of our territorial waters/EEZ.

    The $250,000 fine or seizure of the offending trawler is too lenient. The fine should be $1,000,000 for each vessel PLUS at least 6 months ‘holiday time with hard labour’ in one of our prisons for the crew.

    Slowly but surely in terms of equipment acquisition our armed forces are getting back to the form they had in the late 1970s/early 80’s.

  3. beegeagle says:

    Outer limits of the EEZ? Not a chance…not even if we reconfigured all six 58 metre missile craft would that be able to withstand that kind of turbulence at sea.

    Outer limits are for our over 1,500 ton ships. I understand that the four 1,041 ton Cat class ships which served as buoy tenders in the North Atlantic possess a level of stability in rough seas which belies their modest sizes. Those came through the USA as well. Remember that a few years ago, one of the 1,041 ton vessels served as escort to the flagship, Aradu, during the trans-Atlantic voyage to Brazil for the bicentennial of that country’s navy.

    The very fact of crossing the Atlantic between Senegal and Brazil, about 2,000 miles broad at that point, gives an idea of the remarkable seakeeping capabilities of the Cat class vessels…even at a modest 1,041 tons.

    The SENTINEL MFPVs would be effective because a lot of illegal fishing vessels belong to a similar size category and as such, would operate in precincts where they can be reached by the platforms of the NN Fisheries Patrol Squadron. Beyond that arc, the big ships such as the incoming P18Ns and Thunder-types would have to apprehend the resource poachers.

    What the FG should do, as was the case with the NPA intervention which yielded a 32 metre patrol craft and two 17 metre interceptors, is to ask the infinitely richer NNPC to foot the bill for a US$70 million intervention in the interest of anti-bunkering surveillance and patrols.

    You see, Damen have this 83 metre 1,500 ton platform built offshore in Romania for an unbelievable US$20 million – for an oceangoing vessel. It is technically a fisheries research vessel but it can be upgunned such that it becomes an OPV.

    The NNPC can get three of those, armed with 40mm main guns and 25mm cannons, constructed and delivered to the NN for use in deep sea patrols at the EEZ limits where ship-to-ship transfers of stolen crude take place.

    South Africa own some of those and use them for sovereignty patrols of some island possessions situated over 1,000kms offshore. So the said Damen 8313 vessels do the job.

    Over to the FGN…

  4. Yagazie says:

    Oga Beegz, thanks for your usual detailed response. It is as I thought – these 35metre boats do not have the capacity to patrol the outer limits of our territorial waters/EEZ. A lot of large ‘mother ship’ trawlers will be hovering just within or on the boundaries of our territorial waters /EEZ, waiting for transfers from the smaller trawlers that operate within our territorial waters. Hopefuly the incoming Chinese built OPVs and the second Hamilton Class OPV together with NNS Thunder will reduce this threat to the barest minimum.

    Hopefully the Govt will instruct NNPC to ‘find’ some of the unremitted $10 billion (being the amount which they have agreed has not been paid into govt coffers) and fund the purchase of some OPVs/research vessels as you have advised.. Going furher they (NNPC) could also fund the purchase of the 2 retired German Type 122 Frigates- thus giving our Navy some real fighting ships – pending the time our Govt decides to embark on the acquisition of brand new platforms.

  5. Yagazie says:

    Still on the topic of the 2 decommissioned German Type 122 Frigates, President GEJ heads off to Brussels for the fourth EU-AU summit. On the sidelines of the summit he will have a meeting with the German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

    In view of the fact that part of the President’s official entourage includes the defence minister Lt. Gen Aliyu Gusau (rtd), hopefully the question of the possible purchase of these decommissioned frigates might be discussed.

  6. beegeagle says:

    Those Type 122A frigates would be plucky options for the NN. After the NNS Aradu has been put through midlife upgrades, that would give us

    * three units of MEKO 360/Type 122A frigates

    * two Thunder-class ships

    * two P18N stealth OPVs

    * the three units of Damen 8313 OPVs suggested.

    Those would keep the NN working in the interim, after the acquisition of a LPD, until 2020. That takes nothing away from the real possibility that the FG and the Chinese are probably working on a deal for submarines as I write this.

    In 2020, the FG can then place orders for a new frigate and three corvettes. This is my idea of how to equip the navy without breaking the bank.

    • Augustine says:

      Oga Beegeagle, what is the true operational state of NNS Aradu, to sail and to fight as at today, April 2014 ?

  7. rka says:

    Oga Beeg, I would add to that the building locally of additional P18 Stealth OPVs to keep the newly expanded dockyard busy and maintain the skill set until even bigger projects come along.

  8. jimmy says:

    My Ogas on top well done,
    Now that we are gradually returning to re- equipping the NAVY and the fishery department, it seems that we have a capable minister who sees fishery and fishing in Nigerian territorial waters as a strategic asset it is important that the minister in the short time he/she has to make an impact.
    A meaningful impact does not even involve procurement. Please Minister DR Akinwunmi Adesina,
    sponsor legislation in the NASS any trawler caught in Nigerian waters illegally fishing is subject to a minimum fine of $1million /1 YEAR IN PRISON for first time offenders.for repeat offenders it goes up to $5m/5 YEARS IN PRISON to $10M/ 10 YEARS IN PRISON.
    This money should be used to fund the local communities along the coast of Nigeria from Lagos to Calabar.
    I remain as always
    OGA BEEGS THE BRIG in question Brig ATEWE has been profiled on this blog and also on the web site ABIYAMO.

  9. Yagazie says:

    Still on the German navy decommisioned frigates.

    The German Navy have now retired FOUR of their 8 Type 122 frigates, with the most recent one F207 – the Bremen- being decommissioned on 28 March 2014. The other three are the (i) Emden (F210) (ii) Koln- (F211) and (iii) Rhieland-Pfalz- (F209). These ships were all built between 1980 and 1982. The same time as NNS Aradu.

    This presents us with a good opportunity to grab at least 2 of these platforms, which can form the nucleus of our naval frigate squadron with ASW helos embarked (EDA – american H2-Seasprtes?). Knowing German penchant for efficiency- the ships will most likely be in good order requiring little work for re-activation. President GEJ/Hon minsiter of Defence/Defence planners- over to you.

    • jimmy says:

      The germans are legendary in their mainteanance culture.One of my neighbors who worked in refinery tells me of seeing steel pipes with the nazi emblem on it this 70years after they were manufactured. T-Mobile. America’s First Nationwide 4G Network

    • Are James says:

      There is no better time to pick up defence materiel from any of the major exporters. Profit margins are getting tighter due to the entry of Israel, Brazil, China and Pakistan.
      Disused naval ships are particularly cheap to pick up because of the need to obviate the running/preservation costs of ships they have stopped using but cannot cheaply modify or scrap due to EU regulations on marine disposal. To make it even more attractive to them, throw in a modification/upgrade contract to a German firm.

  10. beegeagle says:

    On point, Oga RKA.

    After all, when Admirals Ibrahim and Ezeoba served as CNS and Chief of Operations, they pointedly put the total requirement for OPVs at 20. Ezeoba said so himself at the OPV Conference in Singapore a few years ago.

    So if we can raise our total uptake on the P18N stealth OPVs to three ships, not to mention the gifted two units of Hamilton-class behemoths, that would be seven oceangoing vessels deployed for EEZ security. We already mentioned the need to order Direct Intervention Funding by the NNPC for three Damen 8313 ORPVs. That makes for a grand total of eight full spectrum oceangoing ships permanently deployed for the task of EEZ security. Those would from time to time be complemented by some fighting ships when crunchtime beckons.

    For all-out fighting ships, we need to undertake the long overdue midlife upgrade of the NNS Aradu and snap up two units of the decommissioned German Type 122A frigates. That gives us three plucky frigates…very important spread, now that the NN have three fleet commands. Our 1,300 ton LSTs have reached their sell-by dates and need to be replaced. So I suggest for the umpteenth time that we get our best offer from what is available on the rack for now – a US$50 million Makassar LPD which will be marooned offshore in the eastern Gulf of Guinea as a floating triservice mini-cantonment with NAF QRF and NN SBS commandos plus Army Amphibious Forces stationed on board, complete with helics, RHIBs and not forgetting two Manta ASD Mk.II Interceptors in the cargo bay below.

    To cap things up on the side of the surface warfare fleet, we should also acquire three Type 056 corvettes (sister ships to the P18Ns which can also be constructed in-country at PHC) – but for our specific mission requirements, enlarged to incorporate hangars and beefed up to 1,800 tons like our P18N OPVs – and then we can distribute one unit each to every fleet command.

    Nine OPVs, three frigates, three corvettes, an LPD and three subs would just be fine. Let’s go for it, Nigerians.

  11. beegeagle says:

    And that is based on the assumption, as their F-series pennant numbers suggest, that the P18N stealth OPVs with their modular design, can be armed with AShMs, SAMs and torpedoes in double quick time.

    Like we have said ad nauseum, Nigeria are slow on fleet renewal. When GEJ leaves office, who knows what his successor might be inclined to do? Nothing? My mind tells me that we should make as many OPVs multimission-compliant. Let us have 6-cell SAMs, 2-cell C803 anti ship missiles and 6-cell 324mm torpedoes on all the P18N OPVs. Thailand’s Pattani class OPVs are armed that way to be sure. Careful kills nobody o

  12. Yagazie says:

    Oga Beegz- I agree with your suggestions 100%.

    Some food for thought- i came accross the following statement was made by a distinguished nigerian as part of a lecture to young nigerian millitary officers at one of our nation’s defence institutions and permit me to reproduce it in full as it is quite thought provoking:

    “NNS Aradu (naval ship) was launched in 1982. It was a geo-territorial flagship of our navy. What is the state of our capacity today? Many have spoken of deterioration of facilities. How did it happen that South Africa could put a millitary boat near our shores over the crises in Cote d’voire and we had no response? The concept of order should not deter you from speaking truth to power. What are you going to hand over to the younger generation? Dead operational vessels? THE NAVY IS THE GUARDIAN OF OUR DOMESTIC ECONOMY. What happened to the concept of the Coast-gaurd? You cannot build on a vacum”

    The distinguished nigerian in question who made these remarks is none other than our ex Foreign Affaris Minister and current permanent representative to the United Nations- Professor Joy Ogwu – who incidentally was a lecturer in Nigerian millitary institutions- so she definitely knows what she is talking about.

    Food for thought for our naval high command/naval planners/acquisition team – WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO HAND OVER TO THE YOUNGER GENERATION of naval officers?

    Also food for thought for us on this blog- TRUTH MUST BE SPOKEN TO POWER – which is what we try to do on this blog in a dispassionate and constructive way.

  13. Yagazie says:

    Oga Beegz- further to your write-up of possible surface fleet acquistions- I would like to suggest that we also get at least 1 fleet replensihment vessel. That way our ‘floating tri-service mini-cantonment’ aka – Makassar LPD, or surface warships/ can be deployed on patrols for extended periods of time within the West African/Gulf of Guinea subregion.

  14. beegeagle says:

    Don’t you think it is high time we kept the 58 metre FACs fully at sea by cannibalising one of each type (Lurssen and Combatante III) to keep two afloat as Midshore Patrol Vessels for another decade?

    The NN should just lay off midsized ships which are neither here nor there and focus on small patrol craft in the 24-39 metre craft for operations 0-55 nautical miles from our shores and in the large waterways and estuaries of the Niger Delta. Beyond that scope, let the OPVs do the rest.

    Apart from their robust performance during the ECOMOG years when they enforced naval blockades, ferried refugees and assisted NA operations with shore bombardment for a decade, we have scarcely derived any value from any of those six ships since 2000 AD.

  15. beegeagle says:

    And note that the said 24-39 metre craft are not only speedy but also can be configured as either missile craft or torpedo boats. I am aware that countries such as Egypt and Bangladesh operate cheaply armed and run 27 metre missile craft

    Nothing stops us from constructing more Andoni-class ships and getting the Chinese to have them armed with C704 AShMs. We could also get OCEA to build us some more 32 metre FPB 98 Mk.IIs and have them armed with Israeli-made torpedoes.

    • buchi says:

      pardon me for asking this question.are holwet class u bot submrines still in use(they carry a crew of 50)if they are then it would not be overly ambitions or stupid for us to procure at least one unit or any other fast attack sub to act as a morale booster to our now motivated navy(pls correct me if i am wrong)thnks

  16. Augustine says:

    State of national security question for every one, how safe are we? :

    Imagine a scenario…

    1 hostile guided missile stealth frigate and 1 diesel-electric guided torpedo submarine both sit inside Nigerian EEZ waters and demand all our oil and gas sea business should stop because Nigeria offended them, and we must come to terms with them.

    What will happen?

    • Are James says:

      We have assets to handle the stealth ship.
      Our ASW capability is however untested, I think we have the equipment; sonar, old style depth charges on ships and helicopter borne detection and attacw equipment but the overall capability is doubtful due to a lack of credible exercises in this area.

    • drag_on says:

      What will happen? What else, than what we are good at……fire-brigade. Our politicians will accuse the military of incompetence.On finding the truth the will accuse each other of gross-negligence of the Armed forces.They will buy 15 rafael jets and 50 su25/30s’, 250 German leopard2 tanks, 2 guided missile cruisers, 4 destroyers, 10 frigates,4 subs, 18,Westland Lynx helios and 20 S300 missile batteries then leave them to rot once the threat is gone.

  17. cutievik says:

    Simple….I would stop imaging……lolz
    E no go funny at all.

  18. drag_on says:

    Lets face it, if Nigeria faced a common threat from outside that united the country,money would miraculously appear in stupendous amounts to the F.G. for the Armed forces.The amounts lost to oil theft, politics and corruption would appear overnight. I guess constant regional wars through the centuries taught the Europeans the art of national prudence in security/financial matters.

  19. Are James says:

    This kind of defence planning on the basis of credible scenarios is what our MOD used to do well in the old days. The NIIA in Lagos and NIPSS in Jaji used to be resourced with some of the best minds and the results of their work got fed into national defence planning. It took the Babangida, Abacha, regimes and successive civillian governments to remove all this grey matter from our defsec sectors and now we are where we are. A regional power that cannot anticipate threats or protect its citizens.

  20. Are James says:

    Is there info on the calibre of guns and other armament proposed for the fisheries protection vessels?.

  21. beegeagle says:

    You are right, Oga Are.

    That is why we are stuck with majorly outmoded threat analyses which are still fixated with permutations about lame airforces around here. That kind of thinking was fashioned out in the 1970s and 1980s and is untenable today.

    In the new millennium, the ownership of Su-27/30s and MiG 29s by countries such as Angola, Algeria and Sudan…all of which lie 500-700 miles from our most distant border towns, simply means that they can attack Nigeria from the air and we have not fashioned out any response to that contemporary era threat since such jets vastly outclass our F-7s. Yet we continue to lull ourselves into a false sense of security with our reliance on outmoded threat matrices?

    In the mid-2000s, Chad were in the hunt for six MiG 29s. Just goes to show you that our aspirations are still set too low for our own good.

    • Augustine says:

      Field Marshal Beegeagle, do you think Regional Power Nigeria has no military solution to that lone hostile frigate and submarine stopping all Nigerian oil and gas production and exports? Our economy will collapse, abi? We all starve, abi?

  22. beegeagle says:

    BTW, the fisheries protection vessels will almost certainly be armed with a 20mm cannon, .50 cal HMGs and GPMGs. That is what we have on the NNS Andoni and the Sea Eagle Mk.II OPCs….which additionally carry 40mm AGLs.

    Good enough for asymmetric engagements

  23. beegeagle says:

    Oga Agostinho, “fish rotten, na im mek worm fit enta mouth”

    At some point, we went oveboard in advertising our innocuous intentions and tried too hard to shrink so as to be acceptable in our neighbourhood. That is why after eight A109s in ten years,we have no torps to fire at that sub. Same way we have not realised that in the absence of AshMs and SAMs, our OPVs should have embarked ASW helicopters.

    Man don switch to siddon look mode.

    • Augustine says:

      Please just two more questions : So at as today April 2014, NNS Aradu cannot move easily around 370 km offshore EEZ of Nigeria and deploy anti-ship, anti-aircraft, and anti-submarine weapons to save Nigeria from that one frigate one submarine threat?

      The new stealth F91 video posted by @rka shows the test firing of two medium sized vertical launch missiles, and about a dozen small sized horizontal launch rockets, are those part of F91 final armaments?


  24. beegeagle says:

    An aside..


  25. beegeagle says:

    My man, we dropped the ball a long time ago. As of today, NNS Aradu will need a comprehensive midlife upgrade to regain the fearsome form she was in as of April 1985 when she was the most powerful warship in Africa.

    Not many realise that the Aradu is so heavily armed that she is more accurately described as a destroyer – which is what her more lightly armed sister ships in Argentine naval service are designated as..DESTROYERS.

    Nobody has asked what we would do if Angola also decide to attack our offshore oil installations – the phobia of the late 1980s when the racist regime warmed up to Equato-Guinea? My question is – in view of our threat analyses which are traditionally steeped in complacency – what would we do if Angolan Su-27s are dispatched from Cabinda to bomb the Eket Terminal which are well within their reach?

    Er..”we have friendly relations with Angola” will be the answer to that. Such sentimental hogwash no less. We had better wake up.

    Concerning the panoply of armaments on the F91, except the video bespeaks a revised gameplan, we were told, ab initio, that the weaponry on the ship shall be a 76mm main gun and two 30mm CIWS.

    But with the outfitting of one ship to be carried out in Nigeria in conjunction with the compliant and taciturn Chinese, it is not out of place to expect a revised plan. The pennant numbers F91 and F92 affirm that possibility…which is most desirable.

    SURELY, we need a light footprint of torpedoes, AShMs and SAMs on these ships..just in case. The Navy have waited 32 years for a new-build ship in the over 1000 ton category. Whence cometh another? Better they maximise this opportunity and make the ships multimission-capable. The less said about that, the better.

    The Pattani class OPVs of the Royal Thai Navy refer. Get to google and check out how robustly armed they are.

    • Are James says:

      Every Naval rating I have ever spoken has described the NNS Aradu as a Destroyer. It is in fact bigger and more heavily armed than some destroyers. The story was that prior to the acquisition, Nigeria was trying as usual to be an international good boy and striving not to blow alarms about intentions in the sub region and that was why they stuck to that class nomenclature.
      Now in terms of the lethality of new the acquisitions, I think we are stuck with the limitations we have chosen to put on ourselves (especially for at least one of them)
      The only compensating measure would be to properly arm the helicopters with the mix missiles/torpedoes that have the range to defend our littoral area against a more powerful/conventional opponent than pirates and oil thieves.
      In addition, the Chinese C802 missile should be selected as one of the weapons to be carried aboard the JF17 and some units of that should be aircraft reserved for gulf of guinea surveillance and defence.

  26. Augustine says:

    Okay then, Nigeria is not the supreme giant that we think we are. Pity, we are not safe. Thanks for answering my questions beeg bros.

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