The cockpit of a modernised Su-25KM ground attack jet


A weaponised Puma SOCAT

8 February, 2015

Late last week, reports emerged in the Nigerian media of a hunt by the Ministry of Defence for the following aircraft

* four vastly upgraded Su-25KM ‘Scorpion’ ground attack jets
(so thoroughly modernised by Elbit Systems of Israel that its name changed from the ‘Frogfoot’ to the ‘Scorpion)

* two Su-25UB trainer variants

* six upgraded and weaponised Puma helicopters.

Now, all of the foregoing represents heartwarming news for proponents of a sterner string of acquisitions for the Nigerian military.

The only snag to the cheery bit of news was that the offer made by the prospective supplier, a contractor, appeared to have been phenomenally inflated by anything between 100% and 130%. But that is another matter which shall elicit a comment hereafter.


Moving on, for several years now, there have been strident calls on this blog for the induction of the Su-25 Frogfoot into Nigerian Air Force service. Whereas the Nigerian Air Force have almost single-handedly defined the combat profile of the Alpha Jet on account of several thousand sorties flown since 1990, the Alpha Jet is limited by its payload and soft-skinned fuselage.



The A-Jet typically feature four hardpoints, even as the Nigerian Air Force own a few upgraded examples which feature six hardpoints.

Comparatively, the Su-25 Frogfoot incorporates an armoured hull with pilots able to fly through a laid-up wall of 20mm flak. It features eleven hardpoints and can carry over 4,000kg of ordnance into battle. The Sukhoi Su-25 is almost certainly superior in power and performance to Nigeria’s venerable Alpha Jet aircraft, even as emerging and reliable reports indicate that the country have also lately taken delivery of four additional units (delivery of two units pending) of vastly upgraded Alpha Jet aircraft which feature day-night operational capability and are able to deliver precision guided munitions.

But a modernised Su-25KM will always be more potent and better protected than any variant of Alpha Jet.


If Nigeria do induct the vastly improved Su-25KM Scorpion, it would be the most potent variant of the aircraft available in Africa today. We certainly need those – for all weather operations, versatility, superior striking power and pilot protection.

Moving on, we have previously called for the NAF to webaponise her Puma helicopters to the configuration that is the Puma SOCAT.


So the idea of armed Puma helicopters is okay by me. But not at the cost of about US$40 million per unit as entailed in that bogus offer. NO helicopter is worth paying that much for – assault, attack or transport, let alone a pre-owned one. Not when a pre-owned Mi-17 helicopter, which carries twice as many troops as a Puma, can be acquired and weaponised for less than a quarter of that amount by ATE of South Africa.

If crew availability issues has necessitated the specific requirement for armed Puma helicopters, then we must seek vendors who have pre-owned units available for sale at a unit cost not exceeding US$7.5 million. Thereafter, we can contract the services of ATE South Africa to weaponise and equip them for no more than US$5 million apiece.

By the way, why do we need to buy Su-25s from contractors? Why not buy directly from ROSOBORONEXPORT or BVST and then contract ELBIT SYSTEMS to modernise them? We can also buy pre-owned PUMA helicopters from some foreign airforce or corporations and have ATE of South Africa weaponise them or can’t we?


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. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. beegeagle says:



    That is CRIMINALITY of the most astonishing kind. Six Su-25s and six armed Puma (supposedly the Puma Socat which I have highlighted on this blog previously), all of them pre-owned, CANNOT and should not cost us US$200m. Not even if they are upgraded by ELBIT of Israel.

    So it is 100% deal and 130% scam. For US$466m, we can get

    – eight upgraded Flankers for 150m USD

    – eight new Mi-171Sh Terminator assault helics for 160m USD and which are far more potent and carry twice as many troops as a Puma SOCAT

    – twelve upgraded Su-25KM/UB for 120m USD.

    That leaves us with a complete and potent array of 28 air superiority jets, ground attack jets and assault helics for US$430 MILLION, leaving a balance of 30m USD for ordnance.

    Shame, shame, shame. Somebody ask Chad and Niger how much they paid for their Su-25s, Niger having acquired theirs in 2014. Chei !! This is one more reason why many cynics continue to posit that the so called secrecy which notoriously bedevils military procurement in Nigeria is a convenient smokescreen for the perpetration of sharp practice on a hideous scale.

    God forbid.

    • zachary999 says:

      God bless you brother, very well said….

    • saleh says:

      well said

    • Augustine says:

      On target Oga Beegeagle….you spoke the truth in national interest !

    • Ola says:

      In my opinion, this is one of the biggest problems our military faces.
      This will only end the day we start doing an open and transparent procurement exercise for the military. This is just coming to light now, but only God knows how much the military has haemorrhaged through secret procurements through various “contractors and private arms companies”. Can’t we emulate what other sincere countries do?
      When countries want to upgrade or re-equip their armies, they call for tenders from defence companies directly (e.g in Malaysia or Indonesia in recent times) and everything is open.
      Even if at the moment, we can’t do a global procurement, can’t we invite tenders from Russian and Chinese companies to supply what we need, brand new?
      Why can’t we reach agreements with Russia on a government to government basis, to use that amount of money as partial deposit for major procurements from them in a transparent process and for modern hardware? Pity! 😦
      The day this stops happening, that day we know the fight against corruption has gone one level higher in Nigeria

    • Akin Oges says:

      Brilliant effort my General. This secret secret everything is stifling, and an excuse for some twisted individuals to plunder the commonwealth.

  2. beegeagle says:

    Somebody tell this youngman that the Nigerian and Chadian airforces it was which jointly bombarded Gamboru before the Chadian troops moved in from FOTOKOL.


    The report about a fictional SAAF participation in air operations at Gamboru was the creation of the fertile imagination of a writer at “LEADERSHIP”

    PROOF that there was no South African involvement in the aerial bombings at Gamboru


  3. Manny Aaydel says:

    Gen Beegs,
    To minimize these ‘enemy’ propaganda against us, shouldn’t NAF or DHQ be filming and releasing images of NAF assets in operation? Even if it’s just take off and landing runs (via Beegeagleblog if necessary) to boost morale and counter all these kindergarten trash being bandied in supposedly respected media? We are the only ones to tell our story o!

  4. buchi says:

    a knockout for bh at damboa…recons teams did a heck of a gud job
    ..they didnt even make it to the outskirts of the least village

    • jimmy says:

      Thanks for the information.

    • asorockweb says:

      After Damboa was retaken by the NA almost 6 months ago now, the troops that are currently stationed there have done a stellar job against BH; they have successfully repelled so many attacks.

      The troops at Konduga,
      the troops at Damboa,
      the troops that helped halt the BH thrust into Adamawa state at Hong,
      The troops that repulsed the BH thrust towards Damaturu; at Ada and in Damaturu itself,
      The defenders of Mafa,

      We salute you, thanks for your courage.

      • Colloid says:

        Yeah. We are SOLIDLY behind you. We got your back covered. Remember: Those FOR you are more than those AGAINST you. We pray God continue to strengthen you, to keep you safe as you are keeping us safe, to protect you too from the arrows(bullets and bombs) that flieth all the time. GOODLUCK TO YOU NA.

  5. asorockweb says:

    Regarding avionics, the difference in the “before” and “after” pictures in startling.

    How long will it take for some of our pilots to convert to the FrogFoot/Scorpion?

  6. gbash10 says:

    This is a very bad deal,corruption!, corruption! corruption! to acquire outdated platforms that are out of production.That is steal.
    Are we just getting our hands on any weapon to combat BH in the short-term? even if their capabilities fall below our strategic needs. Hmmm… that amount of money should be used to acquire the Mi-28 Havoc attack helicopters, with a lease of at least 4 (no) from the Russian Air Force pending when delivery of brand-new platforms will start arriving.
    The Navy is doing well in terms of procurement than the army and the air force.

  7. gbash10 says:

    Some weapon acquisitions are suppose to be debated extensively, putting in to consideration cost,capability, maintainability and other factors. Our Jaguar jets are wasting in the harsh tropical weather this days because some few criminals: civil and military leadership connive and shortchanged us.Out of the 18 Jaguar jets,it is only the one that was transported to Kaduna that is in storage.
    This deal should be halted immediately.

    • Capt Tobias Wilcock says:

      The Jaguars can be upgraded as was done by India, they still form the country’s most lethal all weather dedicated strike assets, a jaguar break through of an air defense line is equivalent to 4 Alpha jets in it’s weapon load capacity and havoc, This assets are on the hair pin of some countries to never reach it’s potential in NIgeria, The Indians are able to install in them new waepon/delivery systems and re-engined. if operational it reachs are far and wide and strategic, hence it was always wanted dead

      • Augustine says:

        I will sell the remaining 17 Jaguar jets for total $60 million….bad price because it is a discontinued jet and no ready buy except maybe India, also legal issues about transfer to 3rd party without permission from Britain. I will sell of the jets and add the money to NAF new procurement fund. Those Jaguars will never be worth putting back into NAF service. Wasted purchase, NAF should have bought a mix of MiG-29 plus Su-24 instead of Jaguar in the 1980s.

      • Augustine says:

        My personal opinion.

      • lachit says:

        the upgraded SEPECAT/HAL-built Jaguar IS/IM interdictor/maritime strike aircraft will use DARIN-3 navigation-and-attack suite, which includes an all-glass cockpit, HOTAS controls, core avionics computer, new-generation stores management system and digital map generator, wide-angle HUD, and an integrated defensive aids suite (IDAS), co-developed by the DRDO’s Defence Avionics Research Establishment (DARE) and Cassidian. The IDAS will include a radar/laser warning receiver, full multi-spectral detection-capable missile approach warning system, EW jammer pod.
        also RAFAEL Advanced Defence Systems Litening pod will be integrated with it for ground moving target indication (GMTI) and precision target tracking etc.

        Honeywell Aerospace F125IN engine is the only choice due to single vendor situation.

        also there was reports of integrating IAI/ELTA’s EL/L-8251 jamming pod to it.

        Raytheon has been intregating its munitions control unit (MCU) on an IAF Jaguar IS testbed. The MCU is a plug-and-play system that enables integration of modern weapons on legacy aircraft with minimal modifications to aircraft wiring and no changes to the flight and stores management software.

        it is also to be equiped with a refuelling probe.

        MBDA’s AIM-132 ASRAAM was selected for use on its overboard pylons for self defence.
        Python 5 is also used by the jaguars.
        more over textrons sensor fused weapon cbu 97 is being integrated to it.

        recently though there has been no news on the progress of the upgrades.

        by the way MOD has signed a Rs.3113.02 crore contract with HAL for upgrade of IAF Jaguars by December 2017.

        the picture below is that of darin ii ,i could find a darin iii cockpit picture but it will be far better than darin ii

      • lachit says:

        correction it is CBU-105 not cbu 97 for the jaguars.

  8. Capt Tobias Wilcock says:

    Dear Sirs, Find a full clip of the SU25 frogfoot, it was suppose to have appeared at the cancelled NAF expo, A very generous package was offered , even at a time payment was acceptable in Oil batter plus full maintenance and modification capability to be provided locally. runs also on Diesel , unprepared field, capable of Mach 1 dashes, titanium bath cockpit, watch it on ground being fired at with cannon at point blank range, engine cowling capable of absorbing explosions of a disitegrating engine hit by a MANPAD..

    • Kola Adekola says:

      Capt Tobias Wilcock thanks!
      This is exactly what we need. A highly rugged plane that always answers when called; that can land in the desert or a football field to reload and get right back into the mix. What is more, it packs a highly potent, boko haram hating range of ordnance.

    • That is a mean flying armored tank….Men if i am in that i wont waste missles on the BH tech, na just to dey do fly past shoot anything on sight…Damn!!!

  9. Augustine says:

    The alleged over-invoicing apart, second offence is the numbers being proposed for purchase, 6 units of Su-25KM Scorpion? Yet NAF complains of shortage of combat aircraft to cover NE battlespace the size of Britain. Why 6 units of a very much needed combat aircraft ?

    Nigeria, FG, NA, NAF, MOD, stop this peanut numbers of weapons/equipment procurement of 3 units there, some 5 units here, another 9 units somewhere….blah blah blah !

    7 units of BTR-4, reason why I refused to celebrate the BVP M80 IFV and RM-70 MRLS until I see proof of their numbers/units purchased. No wonder no T-72 tank was available to save Baga FOB….how many do we really have?

    5 years into the war against Boko Haram, Su-25 Frogfoot jets have not arrived ! Final offensive is supported by Alpha jets, same old stuff with thin air frame, limited numbers, and tired engines.

    NAF officially announced few months ago that they desperately want a first order 12 units of the American Textron Scorpion COIN-ISR combat jet at $240 million total price, so why not buy 12 units of the Elbit upgraded Russian Su-25KM Scorpion combat aircraft with full load of all kinds of precision guided munitions, LGB, ASM, ATGM and AAM, along with electronic pods, FLIR, TV Cameras, rocket pods, free fall bombs, cannon ammo, all at same price?

    No wonder Chad is claiming to be the one saving us….If we had armed our military with enough n umbers of equipment and the right modern types, we won’t need MNJTF help, we will stop fleeing Bokos at the borders with 24 hour air to land surveillance and attack capabilities.

    Anyway, please FG should add the PGM armed CH-3A Chinese Drones to the new urgent need equation, cheap for $1 million per unit…..grab 50 units and hand over control to Nigerian army itself to own and deploy in combat. These drones with long range and 6 hours flight endurance can track and destroy fleeing Bokos along the entire Nigerian borders as alternative to the glory stealing Francophonies of MNJTF. Abi $50 million for 50 drones cannot be raised in this Nigeria?

  10. Capt Tobias Wilcock says:

    Nobody is going to sell any US lethal piece, it is now at a stage the US spokes person said , “have we ever sold anything to you”, go meet your traditional sources, the Textron would be a big mistake and likely item to be chalked up as a kill on some AAA system , The Textron is not even fully operational or taken through all it’s certification process. How are this evaluations done, why field Pumas, they do not have the performance envelope of an AH, they are primary utility, secondary armed troop transport,. AO operating conditions are very close to “hot and high” at which this aircraft capability , speed, payload, hover on ground affect are severely degraded. The worst thing is to loss equipment and personnel to booster BH morales. The US is not selling to us and the more we keep coming back we are starting to look like a child in a toy shop.

  11. Naijaseal says:

    We should forget US equipments and move on. All we need for the armed forces tactically and strategically can be obtained, no strings attached from the Eastern bloc.

    Leave the west to their own devices abeg, we have a war to win and a country to protect for the future

  12. Oje says:

    It’s not the West it’s OBAMA. President Bush would have given us for free A-10 Warthogs if we had asked for COBRA helicopters, for real.

  13. gbash10 says:

    Gentlemen, one of the newly acquired NAF Aw-101 utility helicopter of the Presidential Air Fleet flew into TAC around 12:47pm this afternoon.
    The sound of that chopper is deafening! hmmm,

  14. gbash10 says:

    Fellow cyber generals,Chief Ezeife should go and get up-to-date Mi-28NE Havoc attack helicopters and some pre-owned Su-27 fighter jets from Russia or he should return that money back to the government treasury,else he would be charged of treason!
    He is a clever man, so,he should do the right thing,a word is said to be enough for the wise.

  15. Kay says:

    Pumas in action are meant to be 565,567 and 569. I don’t know how many others we have collectively. Once were 8 in number…
    568 is possibly crated or is out for repairs.

  16. mcshegz says:



  17. solorex says:

    Mark my words, alot of people will go to jail concerning procurement of COIN platforms! So sad,many respected people will loose all! people talk of can of worms- i think this will be a soak-away of worms when it bust opens!

  18. beegeagle says:

    T129 attack helicopter deal to override this phoney stuff?

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com 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 )

Google+ photo

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

Connecting to %s