By G9ija

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has signified its readiness to partner with the Nigerian Army Land Forces Simulation Centre Nigeria (LFSCN) to establish a digital simulation centre for the military.

NITDA said the adoption of technologies in executing warfare has become pronounced: “Wars are no longer fought by physical presence but through technology.”

NITDA director-general, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, made this known when he received the director-general of LFSCN, Major General Garba Sani Abdullahi, at the agency’s headquarters in Abuja.

He said: “We can work with you to develop a simulation centre where arms and ammunition could be simulated and used for training. NITDA is organising innovative challenge for youths to come up with home-grown innovations and we can integrate the idea of coming up with simulating military hardware for the centre.

“We can call on people to compete and bid for such ideas and we work with them to develop something. NITDA will be willing to assist the start-ups to come up solutions that can be developed into products.”

He promised the agency’s support to build the capacity of its personnel on identified areas of ICT skill gaps: “NITDA’s mandate empowers us to build the digital skills of Nigerians. We urge you to work with our team to identify your capacity building needs.

“We can do some training online through our virtual learning platforms and some could be done physically. We have a lot in common because technology makes your work efficient and effective. We do research and develop the IT sector.

“Our regulations cut across all sectors because everybody needs technology to survive. You can avail us the type of digital capacity you would want to build so we can come up with it or develop a generic curriculum for you in those areas.”

General Abdullahi said they were at the NITDA to advance discussion on possible areas of interventions from the agency especially at this time “when fighting wars is (based) on your knowledge of technology.”

“New strategies to prosecute war are now accelerating the acquisition of digital skills. Simulation training has become imperative to save resources for government.

“A trainee soldier would require 10,000 rounds of ammunition before he could perfect shooting. The resources to provide that is not available hence the need to adopt simulation for training.”

He sought the intervention of NITDA on the provision of hardware and software ICT systems; development of customised software-based simulation systems; research industry linkage to assist LFSCN in building adequate capacity of its staff towards the creation of localised simulation platforms and joint NITDA/LFSCN technology acquisition programmes.

He said this could be achievable through organisation of conferences and workshops that are aimed at promoting development of indigenous simulation systems and provision of adequate internet bandwidth support for the centre to enhance simulation activities.

Bako died on Monday at the 7 Division Military Hospital, Maiduguri, where he was rushed and operated upon after sustaining injuries in an ambush by suspected Boko Haram terrorists on the outskirts of Wajiroko village on Sunday. 

The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant-General Tukur Yusuf Buratai, described the fallen hero as a fighter who gave everything for the unity and peace of the Nigerian nation.

The visibly shaken COAS described Bako as an officer and a gentleman who would be missed by his comrades, family and associates: “They will continue to remember him for the many heroic works at many battlefronts since the inception of the counter-insurgency war in the North East.”

He said the Army would not abandon the family: “As we mourn and continue to remember him, we are not going to leave his family and children after this moment. But the Army is going to take up the scholarship for the children he left behind and will ensure they have a good life even after the demise of their father.”

Governor Babagana Umara Zulum, who was also at the burial, said the deceased was a brave officer. He announced the donation of N20 million and a house to the family, even as he prayed for the repose of his soul and for the family to bear the irreplaceable loss.

Ebonyi, Army, NEMA partner to combat flooding

The Nigerian Army says its officers and soldiers are on standby to render support to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), to tackle flood situations whenever it is called upon, as: “As well trained personnel, our officers are on standby to render assistance to any emergency at the shortest notice.”

Commander, Nkwagu Military Cantonment, Lt-Col. Igbinadolor Erhabor, made this known at a meeting on flood sensitisation. It was graced by the Ebonyi State government, NEMA and Nigerian Army to mitigate the effects of flooding.

He said: “The confidence NEMA reposed in the military, especially the 24 Support Engineering Regiment, is not misplaced. We are always ready and will respond at any day or hour we are called upon as part of the national Disaster Reaction Unit.”

Governor Dave Umahi, represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Dr. Kenneth Ugbala, said the state would deal with the issue of flooding like it did during the COVID-19 pandemic.

He commended NEMA for relief materials to communities and residents, especially victims of communal clashes and other natural disasters.

Director-general of NEMA, Air Vice Marshal Muhammadu Muhammed (rtd), said, apart from loss of lives, flooding was a threat to food security, as Ebonyi people were mostly farmers. He was represented by NEMA’s director of research and rescue, Mr. Vincent Owan.

He said the advocacy was to reduce the negative effects of flooding in the four flood high-risk councils of Ezza South, Ezza North, Ikwo and Afikpo. The probable flood low-risk council areas included Ishielu, Ohaozara, Ohaukwu and Abakaliki.

GOC applauds 81 Division engineers

The General Officer Commanding (GOC), 81 Division, Nigerian Army, Major-General G.A. Umelo, has lauded the commander, Corps of Engineers, Major-General J.S. Malu, for his support for the division. He made the commendation at the headquarters, Nigerian Army Engineers, Bonny Cantonment, Victoria Island, Lagos.

The GOC noted that the CCE has assisted the division with construction projects and offered technical assistance, among others. He thanked officers and soldiers of the corps and called for more support for him to succeed.

Umelo said he would ensure total discipline among personnel and focus on curtailing crime in Lagos and its environs through Operation Checkmate, which he said was “yielding positive results.”

Malu assured Umelo of continuous support and promised to take up some of the issues raised on army properties.