We wrote formally on Nigerian Navy ranks and salary of its officers. This time we write on the various Nigerian naval bases in the country. You can also call them the Naval commands in Nigeria. The command structure of the Nigerian navy is well organised and is headed by the Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS).
The Naval Headquarters (NHQ) is the official and recognized administrative and policy-making organ of the Nigerian Navy. The Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS) is the one who exercises full command of the NN. The CNS has seven staff branches in addition to the Office of the Navy Secretary. The staff branches are: Policy and Plans, Training and Operations, Administration, Naval Engineering, Logistics, Accounts and Budget, and Safety and Standards. These branches are headed by Principal Staff Officers (PSOs) of flag rank.
The Naval Headquarters (NHQ) have three operational commands which includes: Western Naval Command, Eastern Naval Command, and Central Naval Command.
The Western Naval Command HQ is located at Apapa in Lagos. It covers the sea and coastal areas from the Nigeria/Benin border at Long 002o 49’ E to Long 006o E in Delta State, from the Nigerian coastline to the limit of the nation’s EEZ. The Command has the following units under its jurisdiction:
- Headquarters Western Naval Command
- Western Fleet at Apapa.
- NNS BEECROFT, an operations base at Apapa.
- Naval Air Base, Ojo, Lagos.
- Nigerian Navy Reference Hospital,Ojo, Lagos.
- Fleet Support Group (West) at Apapa.
- NNS WEY, a maintenance unit at Navy Town, Ojo.
- Forward Operating Bases (FOB) IGBOKODA and BADAGRY in Ondo and Lagos States respectively.
- Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Abeokuta.
- Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Ojo.
- Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Ogbomoso.
The Eastern Naval Command (ENC) is the second operations command of the NN and covers the sea area from Long 006o E in Delta State to the Nigeria/Cameroon border at Long 008o 30’ E, and from the Nigerian coastline to the limit of the nation’s EEZ. The headquarters is at Calabar. The Command has the following units under its jurisdiction:
- NNS VICTORY, an operations base at Calabar.
- NNS PATHFINDER, an operations base at Port Harcourt.
- NNS JUBILEE, an operations base at Ikot Abasi.
- Eastern Fleet at Calabar.
- Naval Air Station, Calabar (to be constructed)
- Forward Operating Bases(FOB) BONNY and IBAKA in Rivers and Akwa Ibom States respectively.
- Fleet Support Group(East) at Calabar.
- Navy Hospitals at Calabar and Port Harcourt.
- Nigerian Navy Secondary Schools at Calabar and Port Harcourt.
The Central naval Command (CNC) is the third operations command of the NN. The headquarters is in Yenagoa in Bayelsa State. Its Area of Responsibility (AOR) stretches from the Benin River entrance (Long 0050 00’E) to the Santa Barbara River entrance (Long 0060 30’E), encompassing the coastal states of Bayelsa, Delta, and Edo, and the landward states, including Kogi.
The Command has the following units under its jurisdiction:
- NNS DELTA, an operations base in Warri, Delta State
- Naval Air Station, Effurun-Warri, Delta State
- Navy Hospital, Warri, Delta State
- Forward Operating Bases (FOB) ESCRAVOS and FORMOSO in Delta and Bayelsa States respectively
- NNS LUGARD, an inland operations base on the River Niger at Lokoja, Kogi State.
- Nigerian Navy Secondary School Okura-Olafia, Kogi State
The main functions of the Naval Training Command (NAVTRAC) are the coordination and harmonization of training doctrines and standards for all local training in the NN, as evolved by the NHQ. The Command is headed by the FOC NAVTRAC, who is assisted by nine PSOs, namely: the CSO, the Command Technical Training Officer (CTTO), Command Logistic Training Officer (CLTO) and Command Medical Training Officer (CMTO). Others are the Command Academic Training Officer (CATO), CABO, CAO, CINTO and CPM. The units under NAVTRAC are:
1. Sea Training Unit at Victoria Island, Lagos: It is responsible for Basic Operations Sea Training, Safety Operations Sea Training, and Consolidated Operations Sea Training of all NN ships when assigned. It also conducts harbour and ship acceptance trials of vessels after major refits.
2. NNS QUORRA at Apapa: which provides various professional courses for officers and ratings.
3. Nigerian Navy Engineering College (NNEC) Sapele: which provides technical training for all NN technical personnel.
4. The Nigerian Navy Finance and Logistic School (NNFLS) at Owerrinta.
5. Nigerian Naval College ONURA and the Nigerian Navy Basic Training School (NNBTS): which are co-located at Onne, Port Harcourt. The two establishments conduct basic training for officers and ratings respectively.
Other professional schools, including the Medical Staff Training Schoolat Offa in Kwara State and the NN School of Music Otta in Ogun State, and the Hydrographic School in Port Harcourt, the Naval Provost and Regulating School in Benue State, the Nigerian Navy Intelligence School, and the Physical Training School, both at Apapa, Lagos.
The Logistics Command
The Logistics Command is headed by a FOC of Rear Admiral rank. The permanent HQ of the Command is at Oghara, Delta State. However, the Nigerian Navy Order establishing the Logistics Command has been released and the command has since started operation. The Order stipulates the organization and responsibilities of the Command.
The autonomous units
The autonomous units are those units which require prudent management and high-level control that need not be duplicated or represented at the lower hierarchy. Though small in size, they report directly to the CNS. Prominent among the autonomous units is the Nigerian Naval Dockyard, located in Victoria Island, Lagos. Hitherto, third line maintenance had been carried out either in foreign dockyards or private ones in Nigeria, at very high cost.
The Naval Dockyard in Lagos, which was commissioned on 27 August 1990, now takes care of high level maintenance, such as major overhaul of ships engines, additions and alterations, and modification of designs. The Naval Shipyard in Port Harcourt was also acquired in 1990 from Messrs Witt and Bush. Smaller ships of the NN and merchant ships are repaired there. The shipyard has built and delivered some tugboats and barges to some private organizations.