The senate may have commenced the processes of overhauling the nation's security mechanism.
This is because a bill for the establishment of Defence Research and Development Bureau, sponsored by Senator Abubakar Kyari (APC Borno Central), has passed second reading in the Senate. Senator Kyari, while leading the debate on the bill at the plenary in Abuja, said the bill when passed would strengthen the whole security mechanism using the nation's defence assets. The lawmaker explained further that the bill, which was read for the first time on February 14, proposes the realistic defence policy for basic and applied research on defence items and equipment. According to him. The bill is meant to initiate and coordinate the scientific, technological and environmental research activities of the Armed Forces. He said that the ability of any country to wage war depended on the degree of technological wealth in the country, stating that this should be adequately developed and functional. Senator Kyari decried a situation whereby Nigeria Armed Forces depended heavily on the importation of military technology, both hard and software. "This over dependence on procurement of military equipment from foreign countries is detrimental to the development of the country. "It constitutes a continuous drain on the nation’s scarce foreign exchange and fundamentally compromises security", he stressed. He therefore emphasized the need to establish the bureau to initiate, collaborate and coordinate all activities relating to military research and development as well as provide the strategic direction for the actualisation of the military industrial complex and by extension self-reliance in defence and security needs of the Armed Forces. On his part while contributing to the bill, Senator Ben Murray-Bruce (PDP Bayelsa East) said "there was no need for Nigeria to buy bullets, we can make bullets, there is no need to buy grenade we can make it”. "The military industrial complex well-funded, developed by Nigerians for Nigerians will guarantee our fight against insurgency," he said. Similarly, Senator Victor Umeh (APGA Anambra Central) said "without research we will not be able to make any progress in this country”. "Nigeria can invest money to develop its armament with which to defend this country. We need to invest in this type of research and development so that Nigeria can be competent and capable to defend and protect itself", he said. In his remarks, the deputy senate president, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over plenary, said "we have had reasons in Nigeria to set up industries and research institutions”. "They all end up the way they came. I believe that this will not go the same way. To think that Nigeria was buying arms or sourcing arms from any other African country to fight insurgency, it was very embarrassing. "I think we should be leaders in Africa not only in terms of our population but in technology, in democratic practices, in armament and others", he said.