I DON’T NEED TO BE CONVINCED TO PATRONISE DICON – Comptroller General Immigration
The Comptroller General, Nigerian Immigration Services, has reiterated his commitment to make the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON), his first port of call in sourcing for the Ordnance needs of his organization, stressing that the Director General DICON does not need to convince him to patronize the premier Industry which has been variously described as the only Defence Industry in the West African sub-region.
The Immigration boss stated this when the Director General, Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria, Maj Gen Bamidele Ogunkale led a few members of his management team to the Headquarters, Nigeria Immigration Services to deliver the newly produced one hundred ballistic vests to the Organization.
According to him, no local industry can grow, if those in position do not patronize them by making a deliberate preference for their products, stressing that DICON is our own industry and will therefore do all within his reach to prioritize doing business with the Corporation.
He lamented a situation where some stakeholders who ought to be seen pioneering business drive with DICON showing lukewarm attitude just because of foreign exchange gains which makes them look outward, adding that the only Defence Industry that ought to be the pride of the nation cannot grow like that.
The Comptroller General encouraged DICON to improve on its Fabrique National Light Assault Rifle model earlier supplied to the Security Services.
He further advised the DG to impress it on his management staff to consult copiously with their customers by carrying them along from the design stage, which according to him, will add more value to the Corporation’s service delivery to its customers.
He called on other security agencies to improve on the current level of patronage for DICON’s products while also calling on DICON to veer into the production of accoutrements, stating that NIS will be ever ready in giving first priority to DICON’s products.
Earlier, the DG DICON, Maj Gen Bamidele Ogunkale noted that upon his assumption of office, he sprang into action by reviewing the Corporation’s Vision and Mission statements as well as the Logo to reflect the dynamic global community since the premier Industry cannot afford to still remain in the state of autarky.
According to the DG, some foundational issues such as installation of new transformers, refurbishing of old machines as well as importation of raw materials for new and existing production lines have been tackled with the aim of going into full blast production of ammunition for the Armed Forces and other Security Agencies, thus making the nation self-sufficient in ammunition production.
He also said the Corporation, under his leadership, was collaborating extensively with both foreign and indigenous companies to meet the ever increasing needs of the Armed Forces and other Security Agencies.
He further disclosed that the Corporation signed various MOUs with these Organizations; as the collaborations will ultimately drive the establishment of the proposed Military Industrial Complex (MIC) for the nation. Some of the foreign Companies with which we have technical collaborations with include; Ballistic Body Armour (BBA) of South Africa, Sur International Limited, Liquid Bullet and Casablanca Industrial Company amongst others.
General Ogunkale also noted that DICON enjoyed a robust business relationship with NIS which according to him has led to the Corporation supplying FN LAR rifles and ammunition, refurbishment of unserviceable weapons and training of the Services’ Armourers.
On the supplied ballistic vests, the DG stated that the armoured plates were of standard level III, 0.26 inches thick ceramic material with 20 years shelf life which has the capability of stopping 7.62x51mm and 7.62x39mm ammunition at a distance of 15 meters, adding that the colour was carefully chosen to blend with the unique colour of the Immigration Services.
The DG commended the Comptroller General Immigration, Alhaji Babandede for his patriotism and unflinching effort to patronize DICON in line with the local content policy thrust of the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“You have indeed made us better in our service delivery through the level of confidence reposed in our ability to deliver on your demands”, he said.