Collaborations between the two most powerful navies in black Africa, the Nigerian and South Africa navies is on the rise. The former has the most number of capital ships, while the latter has the most sophisticated navy in sub-Sahara Africa. In recent months the head of both navies have reviewed the shared challenges on maritime crimes and discussed ways to surmount them together. The
Nigeria’s Chief of Naval Staff Vice Admiral Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas visited the South African Air Chief Lt General Fabian Nsimango in Marvh 2017. At the heartof this meeting was further areas of collaboration, especially airpower aspects of maritime operations.
The Nigerian Navy has reduced incidents of piracy attacks in its waters by over %60, thanks largely to the acquisitions of Naval offshore patrol ships and sophisticated maritime surveillance assets, like the Scan Eagle Eye systems, maritime patrol aircrafts and ground based monitoring stations.
The Nigerian Navy is in the process of acquiring 14 patrol boats from South Africa, in a technology transfer deal that enhances Nigeria’s local shipbuilding capacity. The production will start in South Africa and later be transferred to the Nigerian Navy naval dockyard in Lagos. Nigerian Navy personnel will be attached to the production process in South Africa, this is to build capacity and technolocal know-how.
Nigeria’s Chief of Naval Staff also attending the South African navy festival. He also got to inspect some of South Africa’s Africa defence facilities with his South African counterpart promising to return the visit in the near future.
In 2014 Nigeria received 50 Springbuck amoured personnel carriers from a South African company. The conteact included local assembly in Nigeria.
In 2015 the Nigerian Army took delivery of REVA MRAPS (mine resistant Amoured personnel carrier) fitted with DShk 12.7mm heavy machine guns, which proved very effective at the frontlines.
Besides military hardware South Africais the only nation that has made a direct impact in Nigeria’s war on terror. South African mercenaries proved decisive in helping the Nigerian military turn the tide in the early stages, paradoxically to the chagrin of Pretoria.
In just after three months in the ground a squad of grizzled white mercenaries commanded by Colonel Eeben Barlow, a forner commander in the South African Defence Force, helped paved the way for the Nigerian army’s string of victories.
Called the STTEP, which stands for Specialized Tasks, Training, Equipment and Protection, this group of Bush warfare experts were recruited in top secrecy to train an elite strike group – the 75 Mobile Strike Force. The fact that the Nigerian government felt it necessary to bring in hundreds of South African mercenaries raises questions about the level of help it was receiving from the U.S and Britannia.