A new Nigerian Navy Ship, NNS LANA, Offshore Survey Vessel, has passed through the Tema Port on its way to Nigeria from France, where it was built.
The Offshore Survey Vessel 190 MKII is equipped with state-of-the-art survey equipment and a 7.6-meter surface vehicle for shallow water survey.
The ship has an Automatic Weather Station (AWS), wet and dry laboratories, scientific and technical workshops as well as operation and processing rooms for geographical studies, search and rescue operations and patrol duties.
NNS LANA is envisaged to afford the Nigerian Navy Hydrographic Department leverage to successfully and systematically conduct hydrographic surveys and charting of Nigeria’s waters.
The vessel was handed over to the Nigerian Navy in France on January 15, 2021, after provisional acceptance trials with a change of flag ceremony conducted on April 15.
It embarked on its maiden voyage from France to Nigeria with a brief stopover at the Tema Port where Ghana’s Chief of Defence Staff and other high-ranking Navy Officers inspected the ship.
Rear Admiral Emmanuel Olatunji Beckley, a representative of the Chief of Naval Staff of the Nigerian Navy, and Vice Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo, who addressed the press after an inspection of the vessel on its maiden voyage.
He said: “NNS LANA will not only enhance the safety of Nigeria’s maritime environment but the ship will serve as a critical component in the projection of naval power for enhanced maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea”.
He said the new vessel would play a critical role in the protection of maritime resources and preservation of law and order at sea, thus contributing significantly to the promotion of global maritime commerce.
He said the construction of NNS LANA by Messrs OCEA, a French shipbuilding company, was conceived as a rebirth of a previously decommissioned NNS LANA about ten years ago.
He said the entry of the vessel into the Nigerian Naval fleet was in fulfilment of the dream of enhancing the Navy’s survey capabilities.
Vice Admiral Seth Amoama, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Ghana Armed Forces, who was flanked by other high-ranking officials from the Ghana Navy, said the acquisition of the vessel by the Nigerian Navy was a commendable feat and would give the country full maritime domain awareness.
He said it would further contribute immensely to the fight against the growing insecurity, particularly piracy, on the Gulf of Guinea, adding that the ship, amongst other functions, would improve general security.
The CDS applauded the Nigerian Navy, especially the Commanding Officer of the Ship, Captain Abdullateaf Bappah Mahamud and his crew on their voyage from France to Ghana, and said, the achievement chalked by Nigeria was a shining example to Africa.
He said plans were afoot to acquire a similar well-equipped vessel for Ghana in the future to play a critical role in the protection of maritime resources and preservation of maritime law and order at sea.
Present at the event was Rear Admiral Issah Yakubu, Chief of Naval Staff; Commodore Emmanuel Ayensu Kwarfo, Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command; Ambassador Gamba Hamza, Nigerian High Commissioner to Ghana, amongst other officials.