NAF918 Lockheed C-130H Hercules Nigerian Air Force

Photographed last week in the United Kingdom where she is undergoing refurbishment and upgrades, NAF 918 can be expected to resume mainstream combat support operations with the Nigerian Air Force in the nearest future, further increasing the options available to the NAF at this critical stage in Nigeria’s War on Terror.

Nigeria took delivery of six regular-sized C130Hs in the 1970s (NAF 910-NAF 915) and three stretch C130-H30 planes (NAF 916-NAF 918) in the 1980s. With the crash of NAF 911 in 1992 at Ejigbo in Lagos, the Air Force were left with eight of these reliable airlift workhorses.

Of that number, five units are believed to be “low-mileage” assets with each not haven logged up more than 6,000-8,000 flight hours and are thus recoverable for long-term service.

When NAF 918 does resume service, anywhere between three and four C130H/C130-H30 would be incontrovertibly available for NAF service.


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:

    Great News!! – This is the C-130 in respect of which I had made enquiries in a recent previous posting on this blog. Hopefully more NAF C-130s will be rehabilitated using funds from the current 2014 defence budget so that the tactical/heavy airlift capability our Air Mobility Command will be greatly enhanced.

  2. beegeagle says:


    NAF 913 – regular-sized C130 Hercules, pictured here at reinduction in September 2013

    NAF 917 – stretch variant C130-H30, backbone of strategic airlift operations into Mali for AFISMA/MINUSMA operations

    A Nigerian Air Force C130 Hercules(fore) and a French military transport plane at Bamako Airport

    A Nigerian Air Force C130 Hercules(fore) and a French military transport plane at Bamako Airport


    • Joe says:

      You know whats really depressing about the second picture is the c130 NAF 914 sitting in the back, looking like its in a state of disrepair. Thats really sad.

  3. drag_on says:

    The good thing is the maintenance culture balanced to the budget. Please keep it up. Our thanks go to the CDS and CAS for the good work on Air-force maintenance.

  4. gbash10 says:

    It is long over due for the FG to acquire 4 brand-new C-130J-30 Hercules(US $175 million per unit 2008) or we may just go for the Russian Antonov An-70 medium-lift transport planes.
    For heavy-lift/strategic transport plane,we should go for the beast that can lift 3 MBTs,or 6 Mi-28NE Attack helicopter any where on the globe,the venerable An-124-100M-150 Condor(US $150-160 million per unit),it does not have an equal in the world. US and its NATO allies even hire this bird to transport their military hardware to theatre of operations,a good example is the Malian crisis. Power projection and sustainment can be achieve with this birds. Please we do not want Kabo Air,Bell View,Arik Air or any other private airline to airlift our troops to any theatre of operation within or outside Nigeria again,haba! We have the money,please brand-new no tokumbo airlifters again,because na people children,husbands,wives,fathers,mothers,uncles and aunties,oh! less I friends in uniform go de fly inside these planes,MoD Abuja,Defence HQs and the chief custodian,the NAF HQs take note o!

  5. gbash10 says:

    Please permit me to touch on some of our Defence capability gaps:
    * Modern Air Defence Capability-Fighter jets Air Defence

  6. Yagazie says:

    Oga gbash 10- An124-100M-150 Condor??? I beg cool down!! Yes i agree that the NAF needs new tactical /strategic transporters- but surely nothing that massive.

    Apart from the An-70 which you suggested, why don’t we also look at the Airbus A-400M Atlas aircraft? Its a turbo- prop tactical millitary transport aircraft with strategic capabities (i.e. in terms of range). Like the Lockheed C-130s, it can take off from dirt airstirps and carries almost twice the payload of the C-130s.
    Furhtermore, as a number of countries have cut back on/cancelled their initial orders for this aircraft, we would be in a position to purchase about 4 of these airframes to complement our C-130s..
    The A-400M is also a brand new entrant to the millitary transport aircraft market having only just achieved operational capability in March 2013 (?) and at present only the French and Turkish Airforces operate this aircraft.

  7. gbash10 says:

    -Modern Ground Air Defence comprising of long-,medium-, and short-range missiles to cover all the altitude engagement envelope,e.g HQ-9/FD-2000 SAM systems or the S-400 Triumf/SA-21 Granite SAM system;
    -SPAAGM for point defence to engage and destroy guided munitions launched against SAM sites;
    *Long-range Surveillance Mobile Radar Stations(Russian 55Zh6-1 NEBO-UE,with a search range of 500km,40km height and all-round,detection ranges for fighter jets flying at 10,000m are 300km and 20,000m are 400km,targets flying at 500m can be found at least 65km;
    *Dedicated Attack helicopter squadrons(Mi-28NE Havoc);
    * AEW & C/AWACS planes(KJ-2000,KJ-500 and the ZDK-08);
    *Aerial Refuelling planes(Il-78 Midas);
    *Transport helicopters-heavy-lift(Mi-26 ),medium-lift(Mi-17)

  8. asorockweb says:

    Senate passes 2014 budget

    “The breakdown of the budget as passed by the Senate showed that education had the largest chunk with N373.5 billion as recurrent expenditure and N50.7 billion as capital expenditure.

    This was followed by security which consists of the Ministry of Defense, Army, Navy and Air Force with N314.3 billion as recurrent expenditure and N35.3 billion as capital expenditure.”

    N35.3 Billion for Capital Expenditure for ALL the armed forces.

    That is $234 million in Capital Expenditure – FOR ALL the armed forces.

    To free up federal funds for defense, we have to take a closer look at the following money pits:
    1) Federal Civil Service
    2) The number of ministries and departments
    3) The fuel subsidies
    4) The legislature

    To build a military capable of defending the lives and interests of Nigerians, we need to allocated $500 million for EACH branch of the military for Capital Expenditure.

    If our defense planners know that they have x amount of dollars each year, then they can think long term and devise programs that will bring both security and technology to Nigeria.

  9. Akin Oges says:

    $234 million for Capital Expenditure for the Armed Forces, in the middle of full blown terrorist war, colossal oil theft in the Niger Delta and ethnic cleansing by foreign nomads in the Middle Belt? I just tire. God dey Oooo…

    • Solorex says:

      fast Analysis of key parts based on original proposal:

      For defense equipment procurement Army got N1.25b,0.7b for ammunitions and 0.1b for igirigi project. The Navy got N1b for fuelling Ships, N1.6b for fuelling and maintaining Aircrafts,N8b for ships and spares procurement(bulk going into subsisting Chinese OPV project/US cutter refurbishment?)N0.3b for rehabilitation of existing equipment(no hope for Aradu and co this year?). The Air force got N2b to buy Helix(subsisting procurement of Mi35 helix?) and munitions,N1.6b for maintenance of existing platforms-Alpha and pumas,Mi35s,L-39s e.t.c We all know that major procurement never enters the budget; or are hidden under another ministry e.g Aviation got N21b for Construction ( a few hangars for the Air force can be provided in those airports to be renovated or built as directed by FG). A few other ministries also have fat figures that might end up in defense procurement.

      Our Defense budget is never a reflection of the reality on ground, We were not meant to have new fighter aircrafts this year ( don’t remember seeing it in 2014 budget) Navy got 3 patrol craft for a sister agency(don’t recall seeing that in last year budget also) and so much more.
      This is a politically crafted budget to calm nerves, we shall see the real budget when its sailing, flying and romping through forests!

    • gbash10 says:

      Pea nuts and rubish !

      • Are James says:

        This is just the budget. A plan on a piece of paper to show World Bank and IMF
        It is in no way reflective of current actual and projected defence expenditure for 2014 & 2015. I have already started studying the entire document to see where the money is going to be hidden.

  10. WachanGuy says:

    $234 million capex for the entire Armed Forces or just the Army? Do I read well my Ogas? I want to believe Abuja can always dip hands into our national reserves, or better still open up the oil pumps and deliver equipment to the military as and when needed.
    Sticking to that miserly figure in the name of “competing demands” might leave us without any demands at all if BH eventually achieve their goal due to a lack of equipment on our part as a nation. Sounds impossible but can happen, as seen by our Malian brothers.

    Disclaimer: I am aware Nigeria and Mali are not anywhere near the same level using most military and economic indices, just used their case for familiarity and ease of illustration.

    • doziex says:

      Oga Wachanguy, you were right the 1st time.

      BH is capable of doing to Nigeria what ansar dine and the tuaregs did to mali.

      When BH were using bow and arrows, and home made grenades in coca cola cans, I stated on this blog, that BH will assimilate the mode and method of warfare seen in mali and chad,
      And eventually bring it to Nigeria on a grad scale.

      I also said that because of the ignorant and miserly attitude of Nigerian authorities towards the NAF in particular, NA would not be able to cope with this technical led maneuver warfare by BH.

      I was roundly condemned for my suggestions on this blog, yet it has all come to pass.

      I predicated that towns and military bases will fall to BH.

      Well today, we have the evidence on tape.

      The only difference between Nigeria and mali, is that NO BODY will come to our aid.

      The americans are not coming, and neither are the Chinese. I don’t care how much money we Nigerians think we have.


      And that is why serious and sober minded Nigerians should make their voices heard now.

      This budget clearly shows that our leadership is not serious about defense.

      Madam Okonjo still thinks that her ability to “stand up to the generals” , and deny them funds in favour of her own pet projects, is a virtue.

      Any security consultant, that is looking at the Nigerian polity, and not advising that the nation prepare for 5 to 7 BH or mend style challenges is useless, and does to know their subject matter.

      BH will only wax stronger, mend would resume their atrocities, once the bribing stops.

      The cattle herders will prove to be a very tough nut to crack. The menace of the gulf of guinea pirates would continue so long as NN is not equipped to contain them.

      There are more serious challenges on the horizon, and at some point, there is only so many Hinds and alpha jets to spread around the nation and the region to contain them

  11. gbash10 says:

    Haba Oga Yags,I not state any particular number for the An-124 Condor,but I will now,3 unit for a start will not be too bad,hehehe how you see am bros?
    For the A-400M and An-70 medium-lift transport planes,I have compared their performance before and the An-70 carry the day!check it out and see.By the way it is a European plane, a sanction savvy people,mbanu biko,gaskiya walai!
    We are approaching year 2020,hence the need for us to cover all our capability gaps.
    Last but not the least,for our Air Superiority Fighter jets,Nigeria need atleast 4 squadrons of SU-30MKNi /35BMNi Flanker H++/E++ fighters backed by 6-8 squadrons of the JF-17 Thunder fighter jets.
    The NAF we need a new Air Force Doctrinal Document(AFDD) for Nigeria,tell us what you needs are,how you intend to defend our airspace with the platform you will acquire with our money,and how to achieve that goal should the need arise,a modern air force is what we want with first-line fighter jets,money is not our problem!

  12. beegeagle says:

    We do need strategic lifters.

    For me, the AN-70 wins all round in the head to head against the A400M. We can get three AN70s for the price of ONE A400. The AN70 carries more troops and has TWICE the operating range of the A400. Not much of a contest really. Did France not hire Antonov planes to Mali last year?

    If we can get two AN70s and keep four C130s, that would be a good start. At US$70m, the AN-70 is a steal for real

    • Are James says:

      Need to add that the air force can make money from the AN 70s.
      Millions of dollars were lost in delays and equipment damage getting turbines & other heavy equipment from the ports to the hinterland on our roads for the NIPP power project. An aggressive heavy haul program would have solved that supply chain problem.

      This is also a service we can offer to new and ongoing AU/UN peace keeping efforts all over the African continent transporting equipment and troops for many of the participating countries. This is cool dollars the NAF can make and then re-channel to maintaining their aircraft.

  13. gbash10 says:

    The General Himself,I hail you tire,the An-124 and the US Air Force C-5 B Galaxy are the world big birds,however the An-124 is too much! Libya use to be the only operator then in African.
    The An-124 plane was used to ferry NTA’s OB van control room container from the UK to Abuja after upgradation there,it also used to ferry one of our Puma helicopter from Romania to Nigeria.

  14. beegeagle says:

    It was also used to ferry a Mi-35P (NAF 530) back to Nigeria from LOM PRAHA in the Czech Republic after it was restored to full functionality.

    During the April 2007 General Elections, NAF 530 crashed while providing support for the effort. It was rehabilitated by LOM Praha and returned to Nigeria in Oct 2008

  15. beegeagle says:

    Here we go, Air Marshal Gbash10.

    A NAF Mi-35P attack helicopter in the Czech Republic enroute Nigeria, post-overhaul, October 2008

    A NAF Mi-35P attack helicopter in the Czech Republic enroute Nigeria, post-overhaul, October 2008

  16. gbash10 says:

    Thank you Gen Beeg!

  17. Yagazie says:

    All right my guys- I am now ‘converted’ – An-70 it is for our new heavy lift/strategic millitary transporter if the NAF is given the funding to purchase new transport planes.
    Oga Solorex- you are spot on in your analysis of our capital defence budget for 2014. The announced capital budget ($234million) is for Amenesty International/World Bank/IMF consumption. By now we (at least those of us on this forum) should all know that when it comes to the acquisition of millitary assets, the funding comes from ‘numerous/diverse sources’- so let’s chill and enjoy the ‘acquistion party’ when it starts.

    • Akin Oges says:

      I have read some details and seen Youtube footage on the AN-70 (the pilot even managed to do a near vatical takeoff with the back tyres lifting off first; how is that possible? Impressive). Again, enough details here to put my mind to rest; the $234 million is for the nosey parkers. I implore the FG/Minister of Finance not to fail Nigerians; Nigeria is facing real and present danger. Please fund the Armed Forces.

  18. Solorex says:

    The An-70 will nor be available for procurement any time soon ( at least for the next 5-8 years-if it ever becomes available) Its a joint Venture between Ukraine and Russia with Russia Airforce been the lead customer with other for 60 Air crafts-However the recent conflicts means the deal is naturally temporarily dead. It already happened once ( tied to gas supply conflict and Ukraine attempt to be too friendly with Nato in the past) that the program was dissolved only to be reactivated 2009. Russians will probably reactivate Ilyusin II-72 upgrade project as soon as possible. My thought is that we should refurbish other C130s and consider KC-390 which is an Embraer High tech version of CH 130J to enter Service in 2016(though with smaller payloads capacity)-It is already the cheapest western type alternative to modern A400m and C-130 super Hercules. It is about to enter serial production in 1-2 years time. It definitely cheaper and we would have the flexibility of a very good bargain ( Maintenance e.t.c.) For now only Indian UAC/HAL Il-214 MTA and Chinese Shanxi Y9 are cheaper (but with lower payload capacity)both will not be available for export until after 2018.

  19. Yagazie says:

    So if the AN-70 won’t be available for a couple of years and the Ebraer KC-390 (which has a smaller payload capacity than the C-130) won’t be available until at least 2016, then I guess it’s back to the A400M-Atlas which is available…NOW. In the interim we could fix up our remaining salvageable C-130, whilst the 3 ‘unserviceable’ ones could be cannabilized for spares or sold as scrap or even used for training purposes (e.g. hostage rescue scenarios etc).

  20. beegeagle says:

    Well done, Defenceweb. After all, Beegeagle’s Bloggers read them too. That is inter-African solidarity at play. I commend the gesture and extend a hand of fellowship to them.

    One of the most respected Beegeagle’s Bloggers is surely Colonel Eeben Barlow and he is a worthy son of South Africa.

  21. Max Montero says:

    General Beeg, saw this article in the Aviationist website. Its about NAF-918 C-130 Hercules.

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