The Federal Government has reiterated its commitment to ensuring that Nigerian cadets undergo adequate sea time training to enable them to become gainfully employed in the nation’s shipping sector.
According to him, the NSDP programme sponsored by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), has over 7,000 seafarers on the Nigerian Seafarers Register, and more attention would be given to seafarers’ specialised training to enable them to perform expert tasks in their various fields of engagement onboard vessels.
“Seafaring has evolved over the years from apprenticeship to specialised and rigorous nautical education, necessitated by digitalisation and the development of modern, technologically advanced vessels.
“The world is in short supply of qualified seafarers today and the rapid rise in digital technology and automation mean that one of the world’s oldest professions is set to change more in the next couple of years,” he said.
Bashir Jamoh, Director- General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) said the agency would continue to pay priority attention to the capacity development and employment of Nigerian seafarers.
He said NIMASA has introduced Seafarers Identity Documents (SID) registration portal and other e-platform for dockworkers and their employers to ease the registration and verification process in line with international best practices.
He assured the nation’s maritime community that Nigerian seafarers will remain at the core of all of the agency’s policy and decision-making in all matters of shipping.
According to him, the role of NIMASA as a regulatory agency is to ensure Nigerian seafarers are treated fairly by shipowners and employers through the implementation of approved conditions of service and collective bargaining agreements.
Tajudeen Alao, a foremost master mariner, pleaded with the Federal Government to bring back the proceeds of the Cabotage Vessel Financing Funds (CVFF) to enable Nigerian ship owners to either get or charter standard vessels that can employ Nigerian seafarers.
“We have cargoes without ships and Nigeria cannot become a maritime hub without bunker ships,” he said.
“If the government can give us more ships, we will be able to support more seafarers by training them, giving them sea time opportunity and better employment,” said McGeorge Onyung, president of Ship Owners Association of Nigeria (SOAN).
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NIMASA set to open Lokoja office to harness waterways resources
The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Bashir Jamoh, has disclosed that the Agency is set to reopen the Lokoja office, as part of efforts towards harnessing the Blue Economy, enhancing collaboration, while also promoting Research and Development.
The DG, who made this known when he played host to the Executive Secretary of the Kaduna State Emergency Management Agency (KADSEMA), Mal. Usman Hayatu Mazadu at the head office of the Agency in Lagos, noted that investment in research would play a major role in ensuring the harnessing of Nigeria’s maritime potentials.
“The key cardinal principle of opening the NIMASA Lokoja office is to improve on Research and Development.
He said, “Now, the Blue Economy has come to stay and very soon you will see the impact of what we have; in terms of the gains and benefits to grow our Gross Domestic Product while improving the well-being of our own Economy”.
Earlier in his remarks, Mallam Usman of KADSEMA lauded the Agency for the feat achieved so far, which cuts across the entire Nigeria.
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