In a significant development for the Nigerian Navy, an official Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed with Dearsan Shipyard to initiate the renovation and refurbishment of their esteemed flagship vessel, the MEKO 360-class frigate NNS ARADU.
The ceremony also marked an agreement for the export of a Tuzla-class patrol boat from Dearsan Shipyard.
Rear Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo, Commander of the Nigerian Navy, and Aziz Yıldırım, Chairman of Dearsan Shipyard’s Board of Directors, were the signatories to this important MoU.
Under the comprehensive agreement, Dearsan Shipyard will undertake the task of modernizing the NNS ARADU, while also supplying the Nigerian Navy with a Tuzla-class Patrol Ship. The NNS ARADU, named after Nigeria’s Aradu River, one of the country’s largest rivers, was originally built in Germany during the 1980s and commissioned in 1982. It belongs to the prestigious MEKO 360-class frigates, specifically tailored to meet the requirements of the Nigerian Navy and constructed by Germany’s Blohm + Voss shipyard.
A noteworthy event in the collaboration between the Nigerian Navy and Dearsan Shipyard was the keel-laying ceremony held on September 16, 2022, at Dearsan’s shipyard in Tuzla. This ceremony marked the beginning of the construction of two 76-meter Offshore Patrol Vessels, which are being purpose-built to meet the specific needs of the Nigerian Navy. Dearsan Shipyard is entrusted with the responsibility of designing, integrating, and constructing these vessels.
It is important to clarify that recent reports in Nigerian and Turkish media outlets speculated on the Nigerian Navy’s potential acquisition of an F-142 frigate from Dearsan. However, the contract signed between the two parties does not include the purchase of the frigate. Instead, the Nigerian Navy has opted for the acquisition of a Tuzla-class patrol vessel.