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NIMASA sends 200 cadets for oversea training under NSDP-3

—as Amaechi advises NIMASA to look inwards in future training

Eyewitness reporter

The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency(NIMASA) has sent 200 cadets to various maritime institutions and Nautical colleges overseas under the third phase of the Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme (NSDP).

The Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, flagged off the third phase of the programme in Lagos last week Friday.

During the flag-off ceremony NIMASA in Lagos, Amaechi urged the 200 NSDP-3 cadets to be of good behaviour and represent Nigeria well while commending the resilience of NIMASA in ensuring the success and expansion of the programme since its commencement in 2009.

”The doggedness of NIMASA in ensuring the success of this programme is commendable, but I would like the Agency to include more local training institutions that meet the standard required for the training,” Amaechi said.

To the cadets, the Minister stated, “For those who are leaving, please, do not embarrass the country. You are not just ambassadors of NIMASA, you are ambassadors of Nigeria. You have to be of utmost good behaviour.

“You have to study and pass your exams. There are so many youths who want this opportunity that you have. It means that you must show NIMASA that they did not make any mistake in choosing you.”

He advised those who might not get the opportunity to be hired overseas at the end of their sea time training to return home and contribute to national development, saying opportunities are gradually opening up for them in Nigeria.

“After training, some of you will be hired overseas. The ones that are not hired overseas, please, come back to the country. This country is changing in time. You will see the changes as you come. It won’t be easy, it’s difficult, but the changes are coming gradually,” he said.

In his welcome address, Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, said the third phase of NSDP, called NSDP Tera, had addressed many of the challenges encountered in the previous stages of the programme. Jamoh said with this latest phase, the country was set for a better, more innovative maritime manpower development experience.

He said, “NSDP-3 brings our maritime manpower development strategy to the next level. It is a complete package, which offers the cadets everything they need to qualify as seafarers, from shore-based training to sea time training, and attainment of Certificate of Competency (CoC).”

Dr.Jamoh stated that the Agency was working on signing bilateral agreements with some countries to facilitate greater recognition and acceptance of the country’s seafarers as well as optimisation of the benefits of the programme.

The Director-General said, “To prepare ourselves for the coming opportunities, the Agency will make concerted efforts to sign bi-lateral agreements of mutual recognition of Certificate of Competency to open opportunities for Nigerian seafarers to work abroad.

“We are working with industry experts to ensure that our Maritime Education and Training (MET) meets international standards.”

Chairman, Board of NIMASA, Asita Honourable Asita, extolled the impact of the NSDP in the country’s maritime sector. Asita encouraged the cadets to be a good example and encouragement to other youths in the country.

Former Director-General of NIMASA, Dr. Ade Dosunmu, in his goodwill message, expressed delight in the pace of implementation of NSDP by the Dr. Jamoh- led management.  Dosunmu emphasised the huge economic benefits of the programme, in terms of foreign currency repatriation and employment creation, among others, and called for its sustenance and continued expansion.

Dosunmu commended Amaechi “for providing purposeful leadership in the maritime sector. The sector has witnessed unprecedented growth since you became Minister. The removal of wrecks in our waters has commenced, piracy has reduced drastically; I commend this administration.”

Delivering a goodwill message also, Managing Director of Charkin Maritime Academy, Sir Charles Wami, called for more partnership among indigenous maritime institutions on sea time training.

Wami advised the cadets to be disciplined and assured them of success, stating, “Onboard a ship, cadets are not supposed to be heard but seen. As long as the sea never dries, there will be jobs for you as mariners. This profession is one that you can be proud of.”

There were goodwill messages from other industry stakeholders, including the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited, one of the highest employers of seafarers in Nigeria, and retired Merchant Navy Captain and former Minister of Interior, Emmanuel Iheanacho.

NSDP is an interventionist programme initiated to address the dearth of trained and certified seafarers in the Nigerian maritime industry. More than 2, 000 Nigerians have been trained under the NSDP since its commencement in 2009.

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As Nigerdock recants operational breaches, FG may lift suspension on the facility

The Eyewitness reporter
The Federal Government has expressed its readiness to lift the suspension order on Nigerdock following its willingness to abide by the rules and its contributions to the growth of the National economy.
The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo, stated this recently when he visited the firm in Lagos in the company of the Minister of State for Transportation, Prince Ademola Adegoroye and some Management Staff of the Ministry.
Addressing the Chief Executive Officer, Nigerdock, Maher Jarmakani and other officials of the company, the Minister pointed out that the reason why they were suspended was as a result of complaints from other Terminal Operators, saying Nigerdock had operating advantages over them.
“What led to your suspension was that I received complaints from Terminal Operators, saying that you are not on the same level with them. In the sense that they pay more to the government than you do. You’re likely to attract freight at a much lower cost to the detriment of businesses”,  the Minister disclosed.
He, therefore, urged them to liaise with Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to work out all the operational licenses needed to enable them to operate and the latter will forward the same to the Minister of Transportation whose prerogative it is to give approvals.
Speaking further, the Minister said: “We will never do anything to undermine the things you are doing here in terms of generating wealth and jobs for Nigerians.  The only thing we are saying is that the law should be followed. We should not encourage lawlessness “.
Responding, the CEO, Nigerdock, Maher Jarmakani, said the firm has taken notable steps in this regard as they have been granted bonded permits by the Nigerian Customs and they are currently working with Nigerian Ports Authority to ensure all processes of getting the needed approvals are followed accordingly.
“We are seeking your support Honourable Minister and that is why we wrote a letter of appeal for your guidance and your support to see that we have followed all processes and procedures” Jarmakani stated.
Furthermore, Jarmakani informed the Minister that in the 30 years of its existence, Nigerdock has employed more Nigerians than its peers, assuring that the company will not undermine the country’s extant rules and regulations.
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APMT advocates road tax credit programme to attract investments to port industry.

L-R: Former President, Shipowners Association of Nigeria, Greg Ogbeifun; Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority, Mohammed Bello-Koko; President Nigerian Maritime Law Association, Funke Agbor; Executive Director ENL Consortium, Mark Walsh and Chief Financial Officer of APM Terminals Apapa, Courage Obadagbonyi at the Nigeria International Maritime Summit (NIMS) 2022 in Lagos on Tuesday.
The Eyewitness reporter
The Chief Financial Officer of APM Terminals Nigeria, Courage Obadagbonyi has advised the Federal Government to replicate some of the tax laws operating in other sectors of the economy to the maritime industry in order to attract more investments.
According to him, tax programmes such as pioneer legislation, Infrastructure and Roads Tax Credit Program which companies like MTN and Dangote have used to successfully build hundreds of kilometres of roads and bridges across the country can also be replicated in the ports.
Speaking as a panelist during a session on ‘Financing Maritime Assets – Ports and Shipyards’ at the just concluded Nigeria International Maritime Summit (NIMS) 2022, Obadagbonyi said, “I am of the school of thought that funding of viable infrastructural projects is not an issue in terms of availability of cash.
“There is a lot of private equity and multilateral funding available if the projects are well positioned and investors have a line of sight to their payback.
“I think what we need to do is publicity and sell these projects to the right individuals with the right pockets. There are incentives that are available to investors in Nigeria.”
Speaking further, he said, “I think with more publicity and engagement with private stakeholders, a lot of some of these challenges that are bedeviling us with investing in port infrastructure can be fixed.
“For instance, we have great tax laws that incentivize investment in this country.
“Things like pioneer legislation, Infrastructure and Roads Tax Credit Program which companies like MTN and Dangote have used to successfully build hundreds of kilometres of roads and bridges across the country can also be replicated in the ports.
” We also have great capital allowance provisions that encourage investors.”
He advised the Federal Government to embark on a massive awareness campaign to further attract private capital to the nation’s seaports because, according to him, based on the latest data published by the Debt Management Office, the country’s debt profile currently stands at N42 trillion, which is about four times the country’s total revenue budget per annum.
This, he said, makes the cost of borrowing more expensive.
Obadagbonyi said Nigeria had to find creative ways to unleash private sector participation in port rehabilitation instead of depending on government funding through borrowing.
NIMS 2022 was declared open on Monday by the Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo.
“Sustainable financing models are important to build critical maritime assets such as shipyards and ports across the country,” Sambo had said while declaring the summit open.
The Minister said Nigeria remained committed to the sustainability of the blue economy.
Also speaking during the opening ceremony, Secretary General of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), Kitack Lim said, “I am aware of Nigeria’s significance to the maritime sector of West and Central Africa.
” Carbonisation is the greatest challenge of our time, which IMO is working to address. The upgrading strategies shall be concluded in July 2023.
“By next year, we shall adopt the long-time strategy. However, prior to that time, we shall continue to support member countries.”
He lauded Nigeria’s role in the suppression of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea but cautioned that stakeholders must continue to remain vigilant as continuous capacity building is key to success in this regard.
APM Terminals Apapa, the largest container terminal operator in Nigeria, has invested more than $438 million at the Lagos Port Complex Apapa.
The amount was invested in developing infrastructure, acquiring equipment and improving processes at the terminal.
The terminal has also been at the forefront of digitisation of port operations in Nigeria in line with its commitment to introducing new innovations to help both shipping lines and landside customers achieve improved supply chain efficiency and flexibility in a cost-effective manner.
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NIMASA unveils N17.4 billion new highrise headquarters on Victoria Island

 

The Eyewitness reporter
The Director- General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Bashir Jamoh and his management team stood tall Tuesday when the tall, magnificent highrise building that will serve as the agency’s headquarters, was unveiled and commissioned.
Sharing in the moment of glory of the epoch-making event was the Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), Kitack Lim, who had the rare privilege of commissioning the edifice, and the Minister of Transportation Engr Muazu Sambo together with his permanent secretary, Dr. Magdalene Ajani.
Apparently awed by the N17 billion tall and ultra-modern building, Mr. Lim said that more important is human competency and capability, while leadership is the most paramount.
He however lauded the initiators of the befitting project while expressing confidence in the leadership of the transport sector of Nigeria.
 He also extolled the dynamic role of the Minister of Transportation, Engr. Mu’azu Jaji Sambo and the heads of the various parastatals under the supervision of the Transportation Ministry.
“An important element is human competency and capability, with leadership being the most paramount to consider, which I have seen exhibited by the Minister.
“He is an extraordinary and rare leader. I am very confident to look forward to more prosperous opportunities and development of maritime activities of Nigeria”, he said.

The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo expressed gratitude to the IMO Secretary-General for making out time to visit Nigeria and also having a first-hand opinion on the developmental strides in Nigeria’s maritime sector.

 He stated that Nigeria will strive to ensure Nigerian maritime activities are in line with best practices, while also embracing new technologies in the frontier of global maritime discourse.

Also speaking at the event, the Chairman, House Committee on Maritime Safety, Education and Administration, Hon. Lynda Ikpeazu commended the Dr. Bashir Jamoh-led Management of NIMASA.

She noted that NIMASA should aim higher as there is room for improvement.

The NIMASA Director General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh  again thanked the IMO Secretary-General for his visit to Nigeria

 “Your name will remain in gold as long as Nigeria’s Maritime Administration is concerned”.

Jamoh further intimated him that NIMASA has embarked on various projects in the year, 2022, all with the aim of ensuring a robust and conducive maritime environment is attained in Nigeria.

This, he said, has been made possible with the support of stakeholders across the board.

In July 2021, the Federal Executive Council approved N17.4 billion to purchase the new highrise building that is located on Victoria Island.

The magnificent edifice is a 16- storey High rise building christened Kanti Tower which sits atop 6600sq metres of land and it is said to consist of the latest technology fittings, a helipad and a parking bay for over 100 cars.
 It was developed through a joint venture between the Lagos State Development Property Company – LSDPC and Senkay Nigeria Limited.
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