Paramount Group has confirmed that it has supplied Marauder armoured vehicles to Nigeria, where they are operated by the Nigerian Air Force.
Earlier this month photos emerged of the Marauder in service with the Nigerian Air Force Regiment, the land force component of the Nigerian Air Force (NAF). They are painted in desert camouflage, indicating they may be deployed in the northeast to combat Boko Haram terrorists. Paramount said the Marauder’s entry into service comes as the West African nation is bolstering its efforts to effectively tackle a wide range of threats posed by various terrorist and extremist groups.
Nigeria’s first batch of Marauders could be supplemented with additional orders. Driver and maintenance training have been successfully completed. Paramount could not disclose the number of vehicles involved in the Nigerian contract.
Nigeria’s Marauders are fitted with the King Abdullah Design and Development Bureau (KADDB) Snake Head turret with a 7.62mm machine gun. Paramount and Jordan’s KADDB have worked together on vehicles in the past, with KADDB fitting its turrets to a number of Paramount vehicles, including the Mbombe.
Senior Vice President of Paramount Group, Eric Ichikowitz, stated that, “We are privileged to work alongside the Nigerian Air Force, commending, through the acquisition and deployment of the Marauder, their continued commitment to enhancing their national defence and internal security capabilities and prowess.
“Nigeria’s Government also understands not only the leadership role they play in international peacekeeping missions across the ECOWAS [Economic Community of West African States], but indeed how to effectively address the evolutionary nature of those cross-regional challenges posed by threats such as organized insurgencies.”
The 15 tonne Marauder can be reconfigured as either a troop carrier or combat vehicle. It features a double-skinned hull throughout its cabin and crew compartment to protect it against a wide range of kinetic threats. The vehicle can also withstand a side blast (IED or roadside bomb) equivalent to 50 kg of explosives. The Marauder is further equipped with specially designed anti-blast seats, which prevent injury from the extreme acceleration of a side blast or mine blast under the hull.
“We look forward to building on our strong and longstanding relationship in support of Nigeria’s Armed Forces, by providing highly innovative and advanced solutions to embolden the nation’s frontlines of modern-day defence and security,” Ichikowitz said.
“Increased security leads to increased economic growth and Paramount’s proven, portable manufacturing model can play an important role in the establishment of local manufacturing capabilities enabling the diversification of the nation’s economy and the potential to foster sustainable job creation. These are shared efforts that we believe to be vital to maintaining Nigeria’s continued trajectory,” Ichikowitz concluded.
Paramount Group subsidiary Paramount Maritime received orders for dozens of rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) in 2018 in a multipurpose effort by the Nigerian Navy to defend its blue economy and coastline, for the continued military training of its Special Forces, rescue and patrol operations and for the protection of the nation’s oil and gas assets.