NNS Oji – the name of the third indigenous Seaward Defence Boat or SDB 3 built by the Nigerian Navy engineers at the Naval Dockyard, Victoria Island Lagos was commissioned on 8 December.
President Muhammadu Buhari in Lagos, commissioned NNS Oji (P275) alongside 118 ships and boats, including a helicopter, to enhance the capability of the Nigerian Navy in securing the nation’s maritime domain as well as the Gulf of Guinea.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony of the Nigerian Navy Ships and keel laying for the construction of Boat-IV and Boat-V, at the Naval dockyard, Buhari, congratulated the Navy under the watch of the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo, for maintaining a steady course in its drive for local content development.
He said, ” I am delighted to note that one of the ships to be commissioned today, NNS OJI; which is a Seaward Defence Boat, is the third of its series to be locally built at the Naval Dockyard Limited, Lagos, solely by our Navy engineers.
“Given our present high dependence on oil and gas revenues, the Navy is undeniably a major contributor to the economic well-being of our country.
Other vessels commissioned along with the NNS Oji includes two Damen FCS – NNS Kano and NNS Ikenne, two ARESA 1700 IPC fighter II, four Manta MkII class fast patrol boats, two Ocea FPB 110 – NNS SoKoto and Aba, OCEA FPB 72 MKII – NNS Osun, a Leonardo AW 139 Helicopter, an dozens of Nigerian made RHIBs.
NNS OJI: Seaward Defence Boat 3 (SDB 3)
NNS Oji (P275) is the third iteration of the Seaward defence boat series built specifically for operations in the Gulf of Guinea.
The NNS Oji SDB 3 is the largest of the series and meant to be the best judging by size and role which includes patrols towards deep seas.
The Nigerian Navy over the decade has developed expertise and embarked on design/building of ship and craft. With the present class of the Seaward Defence Boat (SDB 3) which is a 43m steel vessel, a shift from aluminium to steel.
Most of her structure are built with steel, generated at Naval Dockyard Limited – a commercial entity of the Nigerian Navy.
A single SDB is built annually, and in May last year, the two halves of the hull of NNS Oji Seaward Defence Boat was brought together and welded to form a complete hull.
The vessel’s modern architecture allows for improved seakeeping qualities, faster mission interdiction, and longer time at sea.
NNS Oji (P275) is armed with a 30mm remotely operated naval gun, three 12.7 mm machine guns ( two at each side of the stern, and one behind the bridge). An additional 40mm grenade launcher is optional.
Fitted with modern navigation and communication equipment, and a Simrad radar control station. An RHIB to launch naval boarding parties is carried at the rear of the vessel.
NNS Oji SDB 3 follows a line of indigenous littoral vessels with the first of the SDB class, NNS Andoni (P-100), which was delivered on 7 June 2012, 40 metres SDB 2 NNS Karaduwa (P-102) delivered on 15 December 2016.
NNS Andoni (P-100) armament includes a manned 30mm main gun, two 12.7mm and two 40mm AGL. It also has a RHIB embarked while NNS Karaduwa (P-102) is fitted with a 30mm remotely operated gun, two 12.4mm multi-purpose heavy machine guns and a 40mm grenade launcher for taking out hostile speed boats.
The SDB program of ten vessels will improve upon the capability delivered by Nigeria’s Luerssen FPB57, Ocea FPB 98 MKII, Combattante IIIB Fast Attack Craft, and Sea Eagle Fast Patrol Craft.