The Nigerian Navy Offshore Patrol Vessel, NNS UNITY, which was under construction in China has been completed and on her way to join the Nigerian Navy fleet.
At the handing over and departure ceremony in China, the Chief of the Naval Staff represented by the Chief of Policy and Plans, Rear Admiral Jacob Ajani, conveyed the appreciation of the Navy to President Muhammadu Buhari for approving all steps taken towards the departure of NNS UNITY.
He stated that NNS UNITY upon joining the NN fleet would strengthen the efforts against all maritime crimes and illegalities in the nation’s territorial waters and the Gulf of Guinea in general. He also added that areas hitherto that were unable to be covered by other NN ships will now be covered by NNS UNITY which will no doubt enhance the NN’s effectiveness and responsiveness to the maritime security challenges within Nigeria’s waters.
NNS UNITY enroute Nigeria will pay ‘port calls’ on some ports of friendly nations before arriving Nigeria. This will further boost the existing cordial relationship with sister navies around the world and the Gulf of Guinea in particular. He concluded by soliciting the maintenance and improved cooperation between Nigeria and the respective China Ship building corporations further beyond the departure of NNS UNITY.
The ceremony which was adjudged a success was attended by Chairman, Senate Committee on Navy Isa Misau; Chairman, House of Representative Committee on the Navy, Abdulsamad Dasuki; Representative of the Honourable Minister of Defense, Rabi Tedman; the Consul General of Nigerian Mission in Shanghai and Senior Officers of the Nigerian Navy.
NNS UNITY departed China on September 21 and is expected to arrive Nigeria in the first week of November.