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UK military receives 30 drones with 2km spying range

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By Celestine Ajayi 

The United Kingdom military has purchased 30 “nano ‘Bug’ drones,” which weigh 196 grams (6.9 ounces) and can spy with a range of up to two kilometres, the UK weapons manufacturer BAE Systems said on Monday.

“In collaboration with UAVTEK, we have developed a nano ‘Bug’ drone and delivered the first 30 units to the British Army, which has put it through its paces as part of a trial,” the developer said in a press release.

It added that the drone, about the size of a smartphone, had a 40-minute battery life and could fly in bad weather conditions, including in winds of over 50 miles per hour.

“In even the toughest weather, the Bug can deliver vital tactical intelligence on what’s around the corner or over the next hill, working autonomously to give troops a visual update. James Gerard, a principal technologist at BAE Systems, said.

”Combined with our other information advantage products, this video feed could be shared multi-domain, enabling commanders on land, sea and air to increase their situational awareness and inform their decisions,” he said.

Last year, the UK Ministry of Defence said it would spend 66 million pounds ($89 million) on robotic projects, including nano drones for surveillance as well as remote-controlled fighting vehicles.

Tinubu commiserates with Kwankwaso over father’s death

The All Progressive Congress (APC) National Leader, Sen. Bola Tinubu, has commiserated with the former governor of Kano State, Sen. Rabiu Kwankwaso, over the demise of his father, Alhaji Musa Kwankwaso.

Tinubu in a condolence letter on Monday in Lagos expressed shock at the passing of Kwankwaso, the District Head of Madobi, at the early hours of Friday in Kano at age 93.

The APC leader, who described the death of district head as painful, beseeched God to grant his soul Aljanna Fridaus and prayed that Allah comforted those left behind

“I am saddened over the death of your father and District Head of Madobi in Kano State, Alhaji Musa Sale Kwankwaso.

“Please accept my condolences and through you to other members of the family and relations left behind by elder Kwankwaso.

“The passing of our parents can be painful indeed. No matter how old they may be, we never wanted them to leave. I have been through this and so I know how hurtful it is,” Tinubu said.

He said that he knew how close the former governor was to his father and the remarkable influence he had on him.

Tinubu, however, said that it was necessary to thank Almighty Allah that the elder Kwankwaso lived to an advanced age, served his people, Nigeria and humanity meritoriously.

“He was an excellent human being, a deeply religious man and the district head of his people in Madobi who provided them exemplary leadership.

“His passing is no doubt a huge loss to Madobi, Kano State and indeed Nigeria,” he said.

He added that he was glad that late Kwankwaso left behind wonderful children including a former governor who had also gone on to serve the state and the country well in various capacities.

He also condoled with Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje and the government and people of Kano State over the passing of their eminent son and prayed that God would give them the fortitude to bear the loss.

Bagudu signs N141.6bn 2021 Kebbi budget into law

Gov. Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State, on Monday signed the 2021 Appropriation Bill of N141.6 billion into law.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), recalls that Bagudu had on Nov. 27, presented the budget of N141.6 billion for 2021 to the state House of Assembly.

The budget had over N92.2 billion as capital expenditure while N49.5 billion was for recurrent expenditure, representing 65 per cent and 35 per cent respectively.

While signing the budget in Birnin Kebbi, the governor noted that the budget was graciously approved and passed by the state’s house of assembly.

Bagudu, who prayed that the 2021 budget performance would be better than 2020, described this year as a tough one globally because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“But locally, it is also tough for us because of other factors, particularly the flood disasters that affected the state,” he added.

He also lamented the inability of the state to get the expected internally generated revenue, making it difficult for the government to deliver on its promise of providing citizens’ basic needs.

“Our ability to collect the revenue has been a major challenge, and no matter how noble the executive wished to be, it could not deliver the much expected dividends to the people.

“But in spite of the limited resources, we have been able to still deliver on some of those promises we made to the people.

“I am glad President Muhammadu Buhari has led us very well, and we have been able to deliver to a certain extent, but obviously there is need for more resources to support the bigger dreams and opportunities,” he said.

He, however, said the state had recovered from the flood, and had procured fertiliser to be distributed to farmers who had been affected by the disaster by first week of January, 2021.

“We want to do more than we did in 2019 in agriculture, we are encouraging the executives at other levels to encourage local government areas to guide us on how to do more than that.

“The experience we had from the flood disaster has shown that we need to invest in the upland rice production, and we need to start early because the production begins in the dry season.

“And to do that, we have to secure seedlings and ensure they are are distributed much earlier before the start of the rainy season,” he said.

The governor also commended the house of assembly for the speedy passage of the budget and for its support to the state government in order to deliver on the people’s mandate.

Earlier, Speaker of the house, Alhaji Abdulmumuni Kamba, commended the governor for his commitment towards developing the state.

“We had worked tirelessly; day and night, in order to fulfill the promise we made to ensure a speedy passage of the budget, and it was passed on Dec. 26, and we are delighted to present it for your assent into law.

“We pray God Almighty to bless your efforts and those of the house for our dear state to move forward,” Kamba added.

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