Concerns mount over Nigeria’s plan to buy warplanes from U.S
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May 19, 2016 ( Post 1 )
FILE PHOTO: Nigeria's president, Muhammadu Buhari, and U.S President, Barack Obama in Washington
Concerns are growing over the decision of the Nigerian government to purchase 12 A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft from the United States.
David Kuranga, an investment and political
Mr. Kuranga, who is the managing director
“In a conventional match-up or joint-task
“They are comparatively slow, fly at lower altitudes, and are much more susceptible to anti-aircraft artillery that even rebel fighters in Mali were in possession of,”he wrote.
Mr. Kuranga also said that the warplanes are
“The fact that the Nigerian government is
He said he found it baffling that the US
“These more advanced fighters would put the
Mr. Kuranga also wonders why Nigeria is so fixated on only buying military equipment from the US when it could get same from other countries sans the baggage attached to such purchases.
“There is no rational reason for Nigeria to make the United States its primary supplier of military hardware. Their equipment is pricey, comes with serious strings attached,and what they are willing to sell is by far inferior to what Nigeria can afford to purchase from other sources. Further since, training and maintenance will likely be linked to the
Meanwhile, the New York Times in an editorial has kicked against the proposal to sell the warplane to Nigeria.
In an editorial, published on Wednesday the influential U.S. newspaper wrote that selling the warplanes to Nigeria will be a “mistake” as the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is yet to investigate serious cases of human rights abuses and extrajudicial killings by the Nigerian
“Nigeria’s government cannot be entrusted with the versatile new warplanes, which can be used for ground attacks as well as reconnaissance. Its security services have long engaged in extrajudicial killings, torture and rape, according to the State Department’s latest annual human rights report,”] the paper said.
Quoting a US State Department report, the New York Times wrote that while the Buhari administration has moved to curb graft and investigate some right abuses, the government did not “investigate or punish the majority of cases of police or military abuse” in 2015.
One of such major cases, it wrote, was the wanton massacre of over 300 Shi’ites and the destruction of properties by the army after members of the sect had an argument with the convoy of the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, last December.
The leader of the group, Ibraheem Zakzaky and his wife,who were wounded during the army siege on sect’s enclave are still being held without charge in an unknown location, five months after attack.
“That hardly seems like an endorsement for selling the aircraft,”the newspaper said.
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