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FG Blames High Cost Of Weapons On DICON Neglect

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FG Blames High Cost Of Weapons On DICON Neglect 

Olaleye Aluko, Abuja

The Federal Government has said that the statutory manufacturer of arms and ammunition in Nigeria, the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria, suffers neglect and this has raised the cost of military spending.

The Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali, stated this in Abuja, noting that the poor performance of DICON meant that the defence sector had to rely on external influences for expensive military arms and ammunition.

Dan-Ali noted this in a lecture he delivered to participants at the National Defence College, Course 27. The paper was titled, “Defence Management in Nigeria: Ministry of Defence in Perspective.”

The minister said the recurrent expenditure in military budgets did not give enough room for adequate financing of capital projects, adding that in 2018, for example, the recurrent expenditure was about 73 per cent.

Dan-Ali said, “The challenges of defence management in Africa, particularly in emerging democracies, are varied and complex. Some of the challenges militating against defence management in the Ministry of Defence include absence of military industrial complex, funding deficit, infrastructural decay and obsolete equipment.

“DICON, the main statutory manufacturer of arms and ammunition in Nigeria, has suffered neglect over the years and has been virtually non-operational. Consequently, the defence sector has to rely on external influence to determine the types of equipment to be sold or acquired. This has increased expenditure, reduced the multiplier effects on employment, encouraged technological spin-offs, and underdevelopment of the economy.

“The ongoing efforts by the ministry to turn around DICON will yield positive results. These were clearly captured in the reviewed National Defence Policy 2017 and the 2018 budget.

“One critical problem facing the ministry is inadequate funding. More to this, the amount approved every year, and the actual amount released, usually fall short of expectation. In 2018, the defence allocation was about N576bn of which recurrent expenditure was estimated at N418.69bn.


“This represents 72.69 per cent while capital expenditure was N157.32bn, representing 27.31 per cent of the total defence budget. Thus, it is evident that the defence expenditure did not provide for adequate financing of capital projects and this imposed some limitations on the activities of the Armed Forces.”




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