Damen Shipyards Sharjah (UAE) held a keel-laying ceremony on 9 December for an LST 100 landing craft for the Nigerian Navy, the company announced on 17 February. Marking the beginning of the vessel’s construction, the ceremony was attended by Nigeria’s Chief of Naval Staff, Vice-Adm Ibok-Ete Ibas.
Damen has designed the LST 100 for a range of duties, including amphibious operations, strategic transport of equipment and troops, disaster relief, evacuation operations and humanitarian assistance. The 100m long roll-on-roll-off landing craft can accommodate a crew of 32 with 16 ‘Embarked Marine Forces’ (EMF) personnel in the deckhouse. There is an additional EMF accommodation for 234 personnel at midships, below the main deck. The vessel has a helicopter/UAS deck and significant space for cargo, loaded via a stern ramp, bow ramp or 25t capacity main crane.
“Today’s ceremony is a significant step towards actualising the dream of restoring the Nigerian Navy’s sea lift capability,” the Admiral commented at the ceremony. “The selection of Damen was based on the track record of high-quality shipbuilding capacity, engineering as well as the belief in the company’s ability to adhere [to] the timelines for the delivery of the ship […] As we say in the Nigerian Navy ‘onward together.’”