The United States government yesterday presented a mobile nuclear detection system worth over $2 million to the Nigeria Police, saying the gesture was meant to strengthen their capacity to stabilise security in the country.
The equipment was presented to the commissioner of police in charge of explosive ordnance disposal and chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear command of the Nigeria Police Force in Ikeja, Lagos through the US Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, via Office of Nuclear Smuggling Detection and Deterrence (NSDD).
The equipment included five MDS vans, three radioisotope identification devices, three pack eye backpack radiation detectors, three survey metres, seven sensor technology radiation pagers, including maintenance and parts kits.
Presenting the equipment to the commissioner of police, EOD-CBRN Command, Zannah Shettima, the US Consulate assistant regional security officer, Jon Dvorak, said; “Nigeria remains one of United States’ key partners in combating the smuggling of illicit nuclear and radioactive material. Nigeria stands tall not only in Africa but globally in its commitment to prevent the trafficking and use of materials that pose a threat to health and safety”.
He disclosed that 30 police officers of the EOD- CBRN were trained for two weeks on how to operate the equipment in order to have the skills to combat the smuggling of nuclear and radioactive material.
In his remarks, CP Shettima noted that the training of the 30 policemen on maintenance of the mobile detection devices was impactful.
He said; “The essence of these training for operators and the maintenance of mobile detection systems is part of our initiatives at ensuring that our officers and men are fully abreast with the current technological innovations in the detection of radioactive and nuclear materials.
‘’This would further boost and develop our capacity in combating terrorism through the operations of mobile detection systems as well as being able to basically maintain the equipment for effective service delivery to detect illicit trafficked materials and respond to nuclear or radiological emergencies.”