The Minister of Defence, Alhaji Mohammed Badaru Abubakar, CON, has commended Caverton Helicopters management for their visionary and foresight in bringing the state of the art facility to the country, thereby promoting the economic growth and developing human capital.
The Minister made this commendation during the facility tour of Caverton Helicopters’ Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) situated inside the expansive premises of Murtala Muhammed lnternational Airport, lkeja Lagos, on Tuesday, 21 November, 2023.
Badaru, who was the second Minister to visit Caverton within a month, said he was impressed by achievements of the company.
He said, “Our dream in the Ministry of Defence is to produce all the equipment that we need for Defence in Nigeria and, here at Caverton, I have seen proofs of assurance that we can partner to do it.
“I assure you that you have what it takes to produce what we need and we will partner.
“We are working tirelessly to make sure that in the next four years, most of these equipment we go abroad to buy will be produced locally. And from what I have seen with you, we can partner in areas of air assets”.
On ground to receive the Minister on Tuesday, 21 November, 2023, were: the Chairman of Caverton Helicopters, Mallam Bello Gwandu; the Chairman of Caverton Marine, Mr Akin Kekere-Ekun; the Chief Executive Officer of Caverton Offshore Support Group (COSG), Mr. Olabode Makanjuola; the Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Rotimi Makanjuola and other top management staff.
In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Defence, Dr Ibrahim Kana said “While we were on the tour of the facility, my Honourable Minister said to me in Hausa: ‘Seeing is believing’. He came to Lagos to see what is on ground especially at Caverton” in his getting set for the mi
military industrial complex take off.
“He came, he saw and he is impressed by what he saw. He is a talk-and-do minister and will be ready to work especially with you,” he said.
In his welcome address, the CEO, Olabode Makanjuola described the day as special because for the honour of “hosting a very distinguished guest in the person of the Honourable Minister of Defence for the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency Mohammed Badaru Abubakar (CON), Sardauna Ringim and Walin Jahun.”
Makanjuola told his guest about Caverton Offshore Support Group, which he said to be a listed company on the Nigeria Stock Exchange.
According to him, the Group “takes great pride in being the leading offshore support logistics company in Nigeria” with its subsidiaries, Caverton Marine and Caverton Helicopters, equally positioned as leaders in their respective fields.
“Caverton Marine started out in 1999 as a vessel owner, operator and recently diversified into designing and building GRP boats ranging from passenger ferries to security boats.
“Caverton Helicopters Limited is the largest indigenous aviation logistics support company in Nigeria, with over 2 decades of experience providing rotary and fixed wing services to the oil and gas industry. We currently operate a mixed fleet of aircraft across multiple locations in Nigeria and West Africa.”
One of the key achievements of the company, he said, was establishment of the MRO facility that he described as the only world-class in sub-Saharan Africa, right on ground in Lagos, Nigeria.
According to him, “This facility has allowed us to deliver light and heavy maintenance, repair, and overhaul services to our clients. We are honoured to have had the opportunity to serve the Nigerian Navy, Air Force, and other government agencies, ensuring the safety and reliability of their aircrafts.
“Furthermore, our Training Centre houses the first-ever full reality AW-139 simulator, as well as asoon to be commissioned AW-109 simulator. These simulators enable us to provide comprehensive and realistic training to our pilots, ensuri
ing the highest standards of safety and operational excellence. We hope that the Honourable Minister will have a memorable and enlightening experience during his planned first flight in the AW 139 simulator”.
He also stated the company’s landmark achievements.
“Our success at Caverton is built on the pillars of innovation, professionalism, safety and unwavering dedication to customer satisfaction. We are proud of our achievements and the positive impact we have made in the Nigerian aviation and maritime sectors,” the CEO said.
In his presentation, Rotimi Makanjuola, told the distinguished guest, while corroborating the CEO’s submission, that Caverton has bases in Lagos, Warri and Port Harcourt in Nigeria and in Cameroon and now about to extend to the Gambia and Senegal.
He gave a brief about images in the MRO and training centres, enthusiastically saying the company has trained 200 pilots who are now flying here in Nigeria and in other countries.
Just as the COO spoke, the Director of Quality and Safety, Mr. Kofo Macaulay, gave safety brief regarding the operations of Caverton after which presentations of gifts were made to the Minister.
Vote of thanks was done by Chairman Caverton Helicopters, Mallam Bello Gwandu.