According to a report in the Guardian, Alh. Rabiu Hassan alleged that Israel security contractors were fleecing the Nigerians for huge sums. He said he was compelled to speak out because of his patriotic commitment to Nigeria. At a time when Nigeria is facing huge security challenges, Hassan said the three Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, UAVs, popularly known as drones, were rotting away in a hangar in Benin because they were non-functional.
Even though they didn’t work, he said Nigeria paid far more for them than the cost of the most sophisticated drones used by the United States. Hassan said he had informed government officials of his claim. Hassan is a contractor himself.
Hassan accused the Israeli who supplied the drones of infiltrating the upper echelons of Nigerian government, where he had been operating for more than a decade. But Hassan didn’t give the man’s name. He also said Nigeria was on the verge of being ripped off again—for the leasing of two spy satellites that the Israeli manufacturers were charging Nigeria 145 million Euros, though they cost the manufacturer, Imageseat, just $40 million.
“I have personally gone to Israel and found out from the manufacturers what the cost is,” Hassan said. “It is $40 million for the total project. It is curious that they (contractors) are quoting 145 million Euros. The Israeli company does not quote in Euros, they only quote in dollars. Nigerians must ask questions: is there any such contract at $145 million? This can’t happen elsewhere in the world.”
Hassan told the journalists that all of the activities of the Israeli firms in Nigeria needed to be investigated. He said he had reported his claims to the State Security Service, SSS, and the Office of the National Security on their invitation to give more details on his petition. According to him, he had earlier made a preliminary statement at the SSS and was determined that the matter not be swept under the carpet.