NAF: First Nigerian Drone is a Prototype

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The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has disclosed that the Nigeria’s first indigenous drone, which was unveiled last year by President Goodluck Jonathan, was a prototype and still undergoing production.
 
The NAF Director of Public Relations and Information (DOPRI), Air Commodore Yusuf Anas, stated this yesterday while debunking a report in one of the national dailies alleging that the drone was a wasted project.
 
“The attention of the Nigerian Air Force has been drawn to a news story in a national newspaper titled: ‘How FG blew opportunity to locate girls with drones’ on  on May 21.
 
“In the story, the newspaper stated that last December, Nigeria unveiled a locally made drone at an air force base in Kaduna, although, it has not flown since,” Anas said.
 
According to him, the story alluded to the fact that the NAF’s drone, which could have been used by the government to locate the girls had not flown.
“There is a need therefore to put the records straight as it concerned the NAF unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV),” he noted.
 
According to Anas, the locally made UAV, which was designed and constructed by NAF in collaboration with other local institutions is yet to be deployed for operation.
 
He also revealed that NAF personnel are currently being trained on how to use UAVs for both research, intelligence and combat operations.
 
The director said: “The NAF, after several years of research and development efforts, was able to produce the first indigenous unmanned aerial vehicle nicknamed ‘GULMA’.
 
“This achievement was unveiled to the public by President Jonathan on December 17, 2013, at the NAF Base, Kaduna. It is imperative to state that what was unveiled by the President was just a prototype. Full scale production is still ongoing.
 
“However, the NAF unmanned aerial vehicle ‘Gulma’ is yet to be deployed for operational uses. Meanwhile, training of the NAF UAV operators is currently ongoing.”
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