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Why Kenya has been preferred candidate for IMO category C ahead of Nigeria

President Uhuru Kenyatta tours the modern shipyard at the Mtongwe Navy base in Mombasa after commissioning it on December 17, 2021


Eyewitness reporter
Kenya has continued to develop its maritime infrastructure to position itself in the global maritime industry.
This has given the East African country an edge over Nigeria in the International Maritime Organisation(IMO) where it has consistently beaten Nigeria to the category C seat.
In 2019, Nigeria lost the seat by one vote to Kenya.
In the just-concluded 2021 edition of the IMO elections in London, while Nigeria failed in its sixth attempt to clinch the seat, Kenya retained the diadem in the council elections.
What makes Kenya thick in maritime Industry.
The East African country has continued to develop indigenous capacity in shipbuilding and repairs.
Last week, the country  unveiled the largest shipyard in sub-Saharan Africa
The modern shipyard was located at the Mtongwe Navy base in Mombasa, making her the first country in sub-Saharan Africa with such a facility.

Kenya Shipyards Ltd (KSL) has the capacity to handle vessels of more than 4,000 tonnes and 150 metres and will boost the East African country’s status as a maritime hub.

The new facility has the longest slipway, a platform on which ships are secured and winched out of the water into a working area for construction, repair, refitting and maintenance.

The modern shipyard has two ship-building hangers, one 150 metres long and 30 metres high and a smaller one 120 metres long, 20 metres high and 13 metres wide.

President Uhuru Kenyatta officially opened the facility as Kenya eyes the lucrative shipbuilding and repair business.

The Navy project in Mtongwe gives Kenya a competitive advantage in shipbuilding and maritime engineering in eastern and central Africa, with the inauguration of a marine academy in Kisumu helping to boost human resource training for sustainable growth of the industry.

Certified ship welders

KSL will for the first time in Kenya’s history employ its own certified ship welders, which is part of the Kenyan government’s agenda to create over 10,000 jobs per year in the maritime sector, considering all ship welders in Kenya are foreign.

“In the project, Kenya, which owns about 17 military ships, seeks to save $6,800 million per vessel in maintenance fees every 10 years considering that since independence, all Kenyan ships have been serviced and maintained overseas, either in Spain or Netherlands.

 Every ship has a lifespan of 10-15 years before a full makeover,” says a notice from the Kenya Defence Forces.

KSL is the anchor industry for the blue economy and will provide civil and modular infrastructure workshops, slipways, jetties, bridges and others required to support the maritime industry.

Kenya has already formed a full department on the national blue economy, which will require specialised vessels such as deep-sea fishing in the exclusive economic zone, where vast untapped marine fisheries resources are found.

Securing Kenya’s marine assets requires well-equipped vessels and KSL will play a key role in offering technical support.

Ship construction in Kenya is not a new concept.

The country built its first vessel – the MV Uhuru II – at the Kisumu port more than 70 years ago.

This is an example of how improving shipping and maritime infrastructure is a key component in Kenya’s economic roadmap, by harnessing maritime resources to propel its industrialisation agenda under Vision 2030.

The global market for ship construction, estimated at $126 billion in 2020, is dominated by South Korea (40 per cent), China (25 per cent) and Japan (15 per cent).

The global maritime trade value is worth $14 trillion, of which 40 per cent, worth $5.6 trillion, passes through the east coast of Africa.

This means that Kenya will for the first time have the chance to access $ 5.6 trillion of the trade that takes place in this region of Africa by ensuring ships pass through Kenya to undergo repair and maintenance.

Maritime stakeholders believed that not until Nigeria starts to harness its boundless maritime potentials will it be taken seriously by the global players who have consecutively denied the country to seat at the global maritime Council.
They pointed to a lot of gaps in the efforts of the government to develop the industry and harness its potentials.
They also decried the inability of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency(NIMASA) to deploy the multi-billion naira floating dockyard which has since been bogged down by controversies several years after it was purchased.
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Freight Monitor

President Buhari to commission multi-billion naira Dala Inland dry port Monday –Ahmad Rabiu

The Eyewitness reporter
All is set for the commissioning of the Dala International inland dry port on Monday 31st January 2023 by President Muhammad Buhari at Zawachiki in Kumbotso local government area of Kano state.
The Managing Director of the international inland dry port Ahmad Rabiu, stated this while addressing newsmen on the preparation for the inauguration of the port at its headquarters in Kano.
Ahmad Rabiu, who was joined by the chairman of the inland dry port, Alhaji Abubakar Sahabu Bawuro, said its the first international inland dry port where cargoes will go anywhere in the world from Kano state without follow up to any sea ports across Nigeria.
Ahmad Rabiu told newsmen that the federal government under President Muhammad Buhari has given all the support required for the take-up, noting that they have met the requirement on infrastructure and other critical amenities.
The MD said the stacking area has the capacity of containing 20 thousand units of containers before moving anywhere at any time, noting that the area covers six hectares of land and the management is willing to add more.
According to Ahmad Rabiu, all the requirements needed for clearance by businessmen, and customs duty will be done right from Kano without follow-up to any seaport in Nigeria.
On his part, the chairman of Dala Inland Dry Port, Alhaji Abubakar Sahabu Bawuro said the management of the port is prepared technically, and physically with interested partners and is going to boost businesses in Kano, Nigeria and Africa in general and urged members of the press to partner with the management in ensuring efficiency, emphasizing that the place is not a monument but a business venture.
The chairman said Dala Inland Dry Port is now a solution to the problems brought about by the seaports and they will introduce cargo tracking and door-to-door delivery of goods and services.
He said the success of the inland dry port is a joint venture between the state government, the business community, regulatory agencies and the Federal Government of Nigeria and to make business in Kano and its neighborhood more competitive.
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Freight Monitor

CRFFN rejects re-appointment bid of ousted Sam Nwakohu

Ousted CRFFN Registrar, Nwakohu
— appoints Uromta as Acting Registrar
—-shops for substantive Registrar.
The Eyewitness reporter
The Council for the Registration of Freight forwarding Practice in Nigeria (CRFFN) has thrown out the re-election bid of the outgoing Registrar of the Council, Sam Nwakohu.
In an emergency meeting of the council Thursday at its Abuja liaison office, the Council appointed Mrs. Chinyere Uromta, the Director of Regulations and Enforcement, as an acting Registrar pending the time a substantive registrar will be appointed.
The decision of the council to reject the reelection bid of the ousted Registrar was based on the recommendations of its ad hoc committee to look into the request of Nwakohu for a second term tenure.
The outgoing registrar, last year, at the December meeting of the council, submitted a letter, requesting to be considered for a second term shot at the lucrative position.
Consequently, the Chairman of the Council, Alhaji Abubakar Tsanni set up an ad-hoc committee, headed by Efeanyi Isikaku, to look into the request of Nwakohu and submit its report in two weeks.
“Following the completion of its assignment and submission of its report, the council, therefore, convened today (Thursday)in Abuja to deliberate on the next line of action to be taken in respect of the committee’s recommendations.
” The AdHoc committee made important recommendations with reference to the provisions of Public Service Rules as well as the council’s Act.
“The committee however, recommended that in order to avoid a vacuum after the expiration of the Registrar’s tenure, the council shall start making arrangements for a handover of the Registrar’s office to the most senior management staff of the council.
“Similarly, the committee also recommended that the Appointment Promotion and Discipline committee of the council be directed to start making preparations for reappointment or appointment of substantive Registrar”  Muftahu Ya’u, the chairman Committee on Media and Publicity of the governing council,  declared in a statement he sent to our reporter.
 “Finally, the council’s chairman soon after the adoption, approval, and ratification of the committee’s recommendations by members of the council directed the followings:
that arrangement for the Registrar’s handover to Mrs. Chinyere Uromta  Director, Regulations and Enforcement on 31st of January 2023.
“That committee on Appointment Promotion and Discipline go ahead to start preparations for reappointment/appointment of a new Registrar” the head of media and publicity of the council concluded.
It could be recalled that soon after Nwakohu made his ambition known to succeed himself as the Registrar of the council, he went on a lobbying spree, trying to woo the council members to buy into his ambition.
But sources close to the council whispered to our reporter that the second term bid of Nwakohu was dead on arrival due to lots of baggage he carries.
“There was no way he could have succeeded in his obnoxious bid to succeed himself.
Firstly, it was a general consensus among the freight forwarding confraternity that Nwakohu failed woefully as the registrar.
“He is incompetent, arrogant and someone not ready to learn,” a highly placed source said.
“Also, several allegations of financial sleaze against him have not been cleared.
“Similarly, the council members were not happy at the way Nwakohu handled the purchase of the CRFFN Abuja liaison office which cost they felt was inflated.
“All these and other uncharitable behavior of the outgoing registrar are enough reasons not to reappoint him as the Council registrar” the source claimed.
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Transportation ministry inaugurates project committee for Ondo, Benin seaports


The Eyewitness reporter
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Transportation, Dr Magdalene Ajani, has inaugurated
a Project Steering Committee for the proposed Ondo Deep & Benin Seaports.
Dr. Magdalene Ajani, while inaugurating the Committee on behalf of the Nigerian government at the ministry’s headquarters in Abuja Wednesday,  stated that the Committee is saddled with providing guidance and direction on the projects.
She also charged the members of the committee to also facilitate necessary permits, clearance & approvals for the projects.
The permanent secretary said it is also the responsibility of the committee to prepare the transaction for the Hon. Minister of Transportation, Alhaji Muazu Sambo, to obtain the approval of tte Federal Executive Council.
She charged them to hit the ground running immediately.
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