A delegation of Nigerian law makers visited the US on Wednesday 26 May 2021 to inquire why a major arms purchase made by the Nigerian government has not been delivered. The law makers met in Jacksonville, Florida with officials of the United States Air Force, executives of Sierra Nevada Corporation and representatives of Embraer Defense who flew in from Brazil.
In 2017, the Nigerian Government bought 12 Super Tucano ground attack aircraft and accessories from the United States government under its Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program for $600,000,000. Sierra Nevada Corporation was awarded the contract to manufacture the aircraft and Embraer, the Brazil-based aircraft manufacturer, was selected as subcontractor.
The meeting was cordial and warm, but the law makers did not mince words. They pressed the vendors for answers and insisted on assurances for firm delivery deadlines. Their pressure paid off. The vendors unanimously gave firm delivery dates. They assured the law makers that six of the aircraft would be delivered by June/July and the rest by August/September, 2021.
The delegation was hosted by Nigeria Defense Attache’ to the United States, Air Commodore Jibrin Usman, assisted by other Nigerian senior military officers with appointments in the United States.
The delegation and senior military officers were welcome to Jacksonville and hosted after the meeting by Mr. Justice Nyekachi Chuku, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Bcgneeds Company. Bcgneeds is a US Defense Contractor and principal vendor of munitions to the Nigerian Armed Forces. Bcgneeds was also instrumental to Nigeria’s acquisition of the latest Alpha Jets currently used in the fight against Boko Haram.
FRONT ROW, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT ARE:
Honorable Abass A. Adigun, Deputy Chairman House Committee on Air Force. Senator Michael Ama Nnachi, Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Air Force. Honorable Babajimi Benson, Chairman House Committee on Defense. Honorable Makki Yalleman; and Honorable Shehu Muhammad Koko, Chairman House Committee on Air Force.
BACK ROW, FROM LEFT TO RIGHT ARE:
Brigadier General I Isa, Military Adviser, Permanent Mission of Nigeria to the United Nations. Air Commodore Jibrin Usman, Nigerian Defense Attache’ to the United States. Mr. Justice Nyekachi Chuku, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Bcgneeds Company, a US Defense Contractor and Principal Vendor of Munitions to the Nigerian Armed Forces. Group Capt. Abu, Assistant to the Foreign Liaison Officer. Air Vice Marshall Sule Lawal, A-29 Super Tucano aircraft Foreign Liaison Officer.
The delegation and its host visit the plant to inspect some of the aircraft ready to be delivered in June.
THE DELEGATION, HOST AND VENDOR SHOWCASE THE A-29 SUPER TUCANO AIRCRAFT.
MR. CHUKU, HON KOKO AND HON YELLAMAN SHARE JOKES ABOUT NIGERIA AT THE BEACH.
BRIGADIER GENERAL ISA, MR. CHUKU AND AIR COMMODORE USMAN POSE FOR A PICTURE AFTER SWIMMING AT THE WORLD’S MOST FAMOUS BEACH, DAYTONA BEACH.
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