EXPERTS in bomb detonation would soon not need to get closer to such lethal objects to neutralise them as the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) is developing a robot to undertake the task from afar.

The Commandant of the Nigerian Air Force Institute of Technology (NAFIT), Kaduna, Air Vice Marshal John Oshoniyi, who spoke on the contributions of NAF to internal security yesterday, explained that the institute had developed an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for surveillance and intelligence gathering in crisis-prone parts of the country.

At a press conference to herald activities marking the 41st graduation of the institute, the Commandant, said the bomb detonating robot, would assist the government check the series of bombing by terrorist gangs.

He said the equipment required no operator to be physically present at the scene of any detected bomb before its detonation.

Oshoniyi said the institute, funded by NAF, would present the device to the public when it is ready.

“We all know that human beings have always gone to detonate bombs and in view of the danger involved, anything can happen. It is because of this that we decided to go into research and the development of the bomb detonation robot. When we get to the time when we feel the public should know, we will show it to them.”

On the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) code-named “Amebo,” which he claimed to be the first in Africa, the Commandant said its development was a product of the transformation agenda of the present administration, adding that “we do believe that Nigeria is capable of attaining higher pedestal in military aviation and defence related technology.

“Accordingly, in tandem with President Goodluck Jonathan transformation agenda, AFIT has for the past few years been focusing on defence-related research and development activities as part of its contributions to the realisation of his vision,” Oshoniyi said.

He said the UAV had already attracted interest from foreign companies and awaiting test flight, adding that after a successful flight, it would be employed in aerial surveillance to track down pipeline vandals and other economic saboteurs.

Oshoniyi said: “It is pertinent to note that following the successful launch of the our Unmanned Aerial Vehicle – Amebo II last year, a modified and improved version of Amebo III was produced and exhibited at the recent Air Expo 2012, organised by the NAF. This latest version is awaiting test flight.”

A total of 158 students, comprising personnel of the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy and NAF as well as civilians will graduate from the Master of Science, Postgraduate Diploma, Higher National Diploma and National Diploma programmes of the institute.