In line with the resolve of the leadership of the Nigerian Army to domesticate manufacturing of its wares, Nigeria indigenous motor manufacturing company, Innoson Motors has entered into partnership with the Army for modification of some of its equipment, local production of armoured fighting vehicles and other military hardwares.
The partnership follows the satisfactory performance of three Innoson vehicles deployed in the troubled North Eastern region found to be durable.
According to a statement signed by the Director, Army Public Relations, Brig Gen SK Usman and made available to The Nigerian online news portal on Tuesday, the partnership was entered during a meeting between the management of the company let by the Chairman, Dr. Innocent Chukwuma and the leadership of the Nigerian Army led by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General TY Buratai at the Army Headquarters, Abuja.
Speaking on the essence of the partnership, the Chief of Army Staff said was to formalize the business relationship between the Nigerian Army and Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company.
“The Nigerian Army being patriotic and in a bid to encourage local entrepreneurs asked Innoson Motors to supply 3 vehicles early last year which were found to be durable and performing very well as they were employed in combat and proved to be useful, comfortable and convenient in military operations.
“Based on that the Nigerian Army acquired over 70 more variants of the Innoson vehicles which were deployed in the North East for Operation LAFIYA DOLE”, Gen Buratai stated.
He further explained that the Nigerian Army desires to deepens its cooperation by partnering with Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited to conceptualize, design, modify and produce military hardwares.
According to the Army Chief, the specific areas of partnership between the Nigerian Army and the company include immediate supply of 100 vehicles, supply of appropriate gears, engines and chassis required for immediate modifications and repairs of armoured fighting vehicles in the North East Theatre of Operations.
Other areas according to the statement include identifying requirements for production of armoured fighting vehicle in Nigerian Army Central Workshop in Kaduna and enhancing capacity of Nigerian Army personnel to actively participate on the successful implementation of the joint ventures.
Responding, Doctor Innocent Chukwuma expressed happiness that the Nigerian Army has found his vehicles working perfectly and commended the Chief of Army Staff for his great sense of patriotism.
He promised to assist the Nigerian Army in its quest for better vehicles for its troops and resuscitation of its Special Vehicle Plant and Workshops.
Dr.Chukwuma further thanked the Chief of Army Staff for the commendation, maintaining that his company would continue to improve and expand its capacity in vehicle manufacturing and commended the Nigerian Army for the critical role it is playing in national development through the fight against insurgency in the North East and Nigeria in general.
Highlight of the occasion was inspection and handing over of 3 of the newly manufactured vehicles by the company for trial by the Nigerian Army. These newly manufactured vehicles are; IVM G80 Bigger Jeep, IVM G40 Smaller Jeep and IVM Granite Pickup.