The Nigerian based automobile company, Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Ltd, (IVM) has delivered the first batch of vehicles manufactured for the government of Sierra Leone, as the vehicles arrived in Freetown on November 21st, 2022.
The top hierarchy of the Sierra Leone Ministry of Defence led by Mr.Edward Soloku, the Minister of Internal Affairs, and the Sierra Leone Road Transport Corporation made the request for the made-in-Nigeria vehicles during a working visit to Innoson Vehicles manufacturing company.
Cornel Osigwe, Innoson Group’s Head of Corporate Communications said in a statement that various models of vehicles bought within that dispensation were for the current administration. He added that afterwards, the Sierra Leonean government placed an for the manufacturing of Innoson vehicles valued at $4.7 million of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces, RSLAF.
Reacting to the development, Sierra Leoneans were quite elated and commended their president, Julius Baada Bio for opting for an African, IVM, brand of vehicles for the use of the country’s armed forces.
From Nigeria to Sierra Leone, the first batch of vehicles supplied departed from Queen Elizabeth 2 Port (Sierra Leone’s seaport, “Water Quay”) in Freetown for distribution to military officers across the country.
Sierra Leone has become the first country in West Africa to use the IVM products in its armed forces outside Nigeria. Innoson Group is currently serving as one of the few wholly African car assemblers, as it has probed into the vehicle market over the years.
The Nnewi auto plant signed a four-year contract deal with the Nigerian Army to supply purpose-built vehicles for its vehicles, which includes identifying requirements for the production of armoured fighting vehicles in the Nigerian Army Central Workshop in Kaduna.