Why controversy trails Buhari’s purchase of Tucano helicopters – Shehu


Deputy Head of Security at the African Union, AU, Group Captain Sadeeq Shehu (rtd) has blamed the controversy trailing the purchase of helicopters on inadequate information by the Federal Government.

Shehu stated this while speaking as a guest on a breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily aired on Channels Television on Wednesday.

He said: “I think the Federal Government did not do enough in terms of communicating (to Nigerians) what and what it is buying.

“Given the whole package we have been privy to see what the American government is offering to Nigeria, you could account for the difference.”

Shehu, however, appeared to be satisfied with the amount being an expert in the military, coupled with his wealth of experience.

He said, “The cost of a Tucano is $9 million to $14 million a unit. Nigeria is buying for $496 million. If you do a simple arithmetic, it means we are buying for about N40 billion.

“What Nigeria is buying and what countries normally buy depending on the technological base is to buy the aircraft together with the training of pilots, engineers, communication experts, you buy spares that can last five to 10 years, infrastructures, hangers, many rounds of ammunition, missiles, guns etc.”

DAILY POST recalls that there was an uproar over reported plans by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to purchase a Tucano military aircraft from the United States at the cost of $462 million to fight the insurgency.

President Buhari had earlier written to the National Assembly informing the lawmakers of his decision to acquire the equipment to boost fight against the insurgency.

But the move seemed not to have gone down well with some lawmakers, who questioned why such a huge amount would be spent.

While the letter was read on the floor of the House of Representatives on Tuesday, some lawmakers described the payment by the executive of over 400 million dollars for 12 Tucano fighter aircraft without the approval of the National Assembly as unconstitutional and impeachable.


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