$1bn Military Helicopters: US Trainers To Spend Two Years In Nigeria

The United States Government has said the implementation of its proposed sale of 12 AH-1Z Cobra attack helicopters to Nigeria will require the deployment of three of its representatives or those of the contractors to reside in the country for two years for the purposes of training and logistics.

The US Defence Security Cooperation Agency, on Thursday, said in a statement on its website titled, ‘Nigeria – AH-1Z Attack Helicopter Related FMS Acquisitions’, that the notice of the potential sale was required by law and that Congress had been notified of the possible transaction.

It said the State Department had;

“made a determination approving a possible foreign military sale to the Government of Nigeria of AH-1Z attack helicopter related FMS acquisitions and related equipment for an estimated cost of $997m.”

The statement named the principal contractors as Bell Helicopter, Textron, Fort Worth, TX; and General Electric Company, Lynn, MA, saying the proposed sale would better equip Nigeria to contribute to shared security objectives, promote regional stability and build interoperability with the US and other western partners.

On the need to deploy representatives of either the US government or the contractors in Nigeria, the statement partly reads:

“Implementation of this proposed sale will require the assignment of US Government or contractor representatives to Nigeria for mobile training teams and contract logistics support.

“The case will include special training on the law of armed conflict and human rights, and air-to-ground integration to minimise civilian harm in air operations. This proposed sale will also require multiple trips by US Government and contractor representatives to participate in programme and technical reviews plus training and maintenance support in the country, on a temporary basis, for a period of five years.

“It will also require approximately three contractor support representatives to reside in the country for a period of two years to support this programme.”

Meanwhile, the statement pointed out that the cost of the equipment could eventually reduce, depending on certain variables, adding:

“The description and dollar value is for the highest estimated quantity and dollar value based on initial requirements. Actual dollar value will be lower depending on final requirements, budget authority, and signed sales agreement(s), if and when concluded.”

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