Benjamin Kalu, deputy speaker of the house of
representatives, has called for a space programme in Nigeria.
Kalu spoke on Friday at the closing ceremony of a two-day
retreat organised for members of the house committee on defence by the National
According to the deputy speaker, a space programme would
help in defending the country’s territorial integrity as warfare is now being
undertaken in space.
“In making your work easy, we tell you, work within your
scope of work, I have seen you also struggle to meet the challenges and the
dynamic demands of security, all of which are issues that have gone around the
space,” he said.
“In some countries, you have space service chiefs, what are
we doing about that? There is a need for one to be created. We are beyond what
“Some of the warfare is now taking place in space. And I can
assure you, [if] we ignore that, we will not be doing justice to the mandate of
protecting the territorial borders of this country.
“So, anytime we start looking beyond what happens here,
think about what happens up there, the space.”
The deputy speaker said the bills before the national
assembly seeking to strengthen the country’s defence architecture would enable
the local manufacturing of weapons needed by the security agencies.
“With the bills, there will be a stimulation of local
content, in manufacturing the tools and the equipment needed to keep our nation
safe,” he said.
“It is a call on Mr. President, to do it and do it as
urgently as possible. So, some of the funding contracts of the military at the moment
will be converted into military industrial complexes.
“And I can assure you, a lot of value addition to what we do
with our defence.”
Kalu expressed optimism that neighbouring countries would
purchase military hardware from Nigeria when it can produce them.
Despite being one of the signatories to the Artemis –
missions planned for mankind to return to the moon since the Apollo era – Nigeria
does not have an active space programme.