“So, we have provided them with the skills, they can be deployed to anywhere the army required them to work”.
The Amphibious Training School, Calabar, on Friday graduated 45 soldiers after undergoing three months intensive training on Maritime Warfare and other security challenges on the waterways.
The Flag Officer Commanding, FOC, Eastern Naval Command, Obiora Medani, said the training was necessary in the face of the current security challenges in the country.
Mr. Medani, a Rear Admiral. said the training was strategic because it would enable the soldiers operate alongside the Navy in protecting Nigeria’s territorial waters.
“Any combined arms training is very good, like the training that they have just finished, as it enables them to operate with the Navy which is very good for our own National security.
“So, it means that areas where they are operating, they are filling the gap because they can operate on land and they can also operate on water,’’ he said.
He described training as a continuous thing in the military because anything could be brought to bear on any operational scenario.
The flag officer commended the Amphibious Training School, Calabar, for serving as common training ground for the Nigerian Navy as well as some foreign officers in the West African sub region.
“It is an important institution. It has always made available its facilities to sister services, Mr. Medani said.
The Commandant of the school, Enang Okagu, said the school had provided the soldiers with the skills necessary for their deployment for any operations by the Nigerian Army.
Mr. Okagu, a Brigadier General, said that apart from the current security challenges in the North-East, the South-South region also faces security threat posed by oil bunkering and maritime theft.
He said: “of course you know that it is not only in the North-East that we have security challenges; we also have the South-South where oil bunkering and other criminalities are rampant.
“So, we have provided them with the skills, they can be deployed to anywhere the army required them to work.’’
He said that the soldiers were trained on different maritime warfare tactics, including swimming instructions, tactical boat handling and nautical charts.
Mr. Okagu further said that 116 soldiers from different Nigerian Army formations turned up for the course but only 45 were chosen for the 34/14 Small Boat Operators Course.
He commended the graduands for their hard work, and urged them to be good ambassadors of the school by exhibiting their training skills in their areas of deployment.
The commandant also thanked the Chief of Army Staff, Kenneth Minimah, for his support to the school.
One of the trainees, Umar Musa, thanked the Army and the school authorities for giving them the opportunity to take part in the course.