The Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai, said that simulation-based military technology was needed to confront the current military conflicts and associated threats.
Buratai stated this at the opening of the maiden Training of Simulation Managers and System Operators at the Land Forces Simulation Centre Nigeria (LFSCN), on Tuesday in Abuja.
Buratai was represented by the Chief of Training and Operations (Army), Maj.-Gen. Enobong Udoh, at the event.
He said that the pace of change was so fast that traditional training methods were no longer able to reflect the new operational reality.
According to him, in order to cope and equally respond to these threats, our Armed Forces are confronted with focused training including deployments, combined and joint operations which are prerequisites in dealing with these threats.
“However, this can only be achieved through employment of simulation technologies for learning, training and testing as well as rehearsals among others.
“Thus, the establishment of Land Forces Simulation Centre Nigeria was premised on the urgent need to extensively deploy simulation technology for capacity building and force multiplication.
“It is pertinent to state that Simulation-based military training has gained popularity world wide amongst defence organisations as it offers the dual benefit of boosting operational effectiveness while reducing cost.
“Militaries around the world have to keep up with major technological advancements in equipment and operate in a complex and dynamic environments, including non-traditional threats and the growth of information warfare.
“I am glad to note that the Land Forces Simulation Centre Nigeria is living up to expectation by focusing on strategies to fast track its development.
“One of those desirable strategies is collaboration with relevant outfits and organizations with wealth of experience in simulation technologies,” he said.
Buratai disclosed that the centre was collaborating with MASA Group of France to organise the training, adding that the objectives of the training would be achieved.
He enjoined the participants to pay utmost interest and make significant use of the period to maximise the gains associated with the training.
COAS also pledged to continue to support the LFSCN with the requisite wherewithal to make it of an international status.
He commended the Chief Executive Officer of MASA Group, Mr Marc de Fritsch for facilitating the training.
Earlier, the Director General of LFSCN, Maj.-Gen. Clement Olukoju, said that simulation was an inherent and fundamental aspect of operation planning for any modern army.
Olukoju added that it was also a vital pre-requisite for preparing military forces for operational engagement through realistic training.
He said that the centre was established with a view to providing an environment where simulation technology could be utilised for the purpose of enhancing operational efficiency.
According to him, the centre since its inception has embarked on aggressive technical and institutional collaboration within and outside the country to fast track its development.
“The objective of this training is to ensure that participants are taken through the rudiments of battle simulation technology, enhancing capacity in areas of doctrine research, operational analysis using the MASA Simulated War-gaming for Operational Readiness and Doctrine (SWORD) software.
“I am also confident that the training will set a pace for driving tenacity in the use of simulation systems to meet the peculiarities of Nigerian army operational planning.
“Added to these, participants trained would form a credible data base for Nigerian Army Simulation Managers that would be required to closely liaise with the LFSCN on all simulation exercises of their respective formations,” he said.
Olukoju disclosed that particular attention would be given to ensure personnel were able to provide the requisite environment to utilise simulation technologies for the purpose of enhancing knowledge, understanding and operational capacity of the army.
He added that training shall be tailored towards validating operational doctrine and employment of simulation to provide requisite operational planning and decision making at all levels.
According to him, efforts would be made to develop simulation platforms through technology transfer occasioned by collaborative efforts.
“Therefore, conducting this training at this particular time is very important for personnel of the centre as well as officers of Nigerian army,” he said.
He urged participants to be open minded and prepare themselves adequately by asking questions to broaden their knowledge on simulation technologies. (NAN)