“Crew kidnappings in the region have dropped with only one crew member kidnapped in Q3 2021, compared to 31 crew members taken in five separate incidents during Q3 2020.”
However, stakeholders said these presentations highlighting the decline in kidnappings, came as details continued to filter out on the latest incident involving a containership in the region.
The Polish Ministry confirmed that one of the six individuals taken was a Polish citizen and said it was working on the return of their seafarer.
The incident took place on December 13, but there was some confusion on the exact number of people involved as some crew members were thought to be hiding on the containership.
Dryad reported that this latest incident brought the total to 10 incidents with 76 crew abducted this year.
Speaking at the conference, Nigeria officials cited the economic impact as well as environmental pollution from the piracy activity. They admitted that the attacks were taking place in anchorages and various parts of the country, but said they were meeting with the police to better coordinate efforts with the Navy.
“It impacted the seafarers and shipping economically such as loss of revenue due to illegal activities, high insurance premium, a threat to commerce, socially such as arm and drug smuggling, and kidnapping,” they said during the presentation but promised that they were committed to continuing the progress cited by Jamoh.
The NIMASA boss however disclosed that various interventions had been introduced to address the situation, including passage of new legislation and review of local laws.
In June 2021, Nigeria launched a coordinated programme known as Deep Blue which was outfitted with a broad range of equipment to combat piracy both at the bases as well as in the country’s territorial waters.
International forces are seeking to supplement the effort, but as the Danes highlighted in the recent incident, they were barred from following the pirates with the kidnapped crew when they entered territorial waters.
Danish court returns guilty verdict on Nigerian pirate —- remands him in prison
A Danish court on Monday found a Nigerian guilty of endangering the lives of Danish military personnel in a shooting incident last November involving Denmark’s navy and a crew of suspected Nigerian pirates in the Gulf of Guinea.
However, the court declined to sentence the Nigerian, Lucky Frances, 40, despite a call from the prosecutor for a prison sentence of 12 to 15 months.
As part of international anti-piracy efforts, Denmark deployed a frigate to the Gulf of Guinea in October last year.
“The court emphasized that the 40-year-old Nigeria, together with the other perpetrators, fulfilled all the signs of piracy and had to be described as a pirate group,” Copenhagen city court said in a statement.
Frances, who was injured during a firefight with Danish navy personnel in the November clash, was taken to Denmark for prosecution in January after being treated at a hospital in Ghana.
Frances was exempted from any legal consequences due to his medical condition and the fact that charges against the other three suspected pirates had been dropped, his lawyer Jesper Storm Thygesen told Reuters.
Charges against the three other suspected Nigerian pirates were dropped in January after Denmark failed to find a country in the region to take them.
Frances will remain in custody until both sides have decided whether to appeal against the verdict, Thygesen said.
Possession of NIN by passengers now requirement for boarding trains—Sambo
” The train driver can see from a distance if there are any threats on the tracts that will enable him to match the break long before getting to the threat, and that is why I am telling you confidently,” said the Minister.
The Minister debunked the rumour that train services will resume on Monday, adding that the newly introduced measures will delay the resumption of business along the corridor for a few more days for passengers to get acquainted with the new protocol involved in train boarding before it will resume services.
“We have not said that train services will start tomorrow. I want to be very categorical about that.
“Now, we have introduced a new system before you buy a ticket. The purchase of a ticket requires you to provide a phone number and a national identification number in order to profile you because that is the beginning of the security checks. So at any point in time when a train moves from one station to another, we know who and who are on board.
“If you don’t have a NIN you are not going to board our train, it is as simple as that. If you are a minor, an adult will register for you and an adult can only register for not more than four minors.
“Now, we want to give sufficient time for the Nigerian public to listen to these two requirements, to assimilate this new system.
“So if you go and start tomorrow, a lot of people will be disgruntled. Why didn’t they tell us that this is a new way of doing it? Why didn’t they give us adequate time to do it? So we want to give you adequate time. Definitely between 3,4,5 days, certainly not more than a week.
Sambo assured Nigerians that a smooth and secured train ride is guaranteed while noting that the trains will not travel at night for now, while there is also going to be a review in train fares.
“I can assure you that we are a compassionate government and will consider the masses in the review of the train fare.”
We are not going to tell you what we have done. It is a security matter and I have no apologies for that.
“We’ll be monitoring it on a daily basis and improve on wherever we find some snags”.
“The ticketing called e-ticketing has already been contracted to a company, called secure ID. That concession has gone through the entire concession process under extant laws, including approval by the Federal Executive Council. So that concession remains in place for the duration of the concession period, which I think is 10 years”.
Sambo said that although only God can guarantee maximum security, he assured Nigerians that everything is in place to guarantee a secured and smooth train ride.
“We are not going to tell you what we have done. It is a security matter and I have no apologies for that.
“We’ll be monitoring it on a daily basis and improve on wherever we find some snacks”.
The Minister assured that Secured ID would continue to handle the e-ticketing services.
“The ticketing called e-ticketing has already been contracted to a company called secure ID. That concession has gone through the entire concession process under extant laws, including approval by the Federal Executive Council. So that concession remains in place for the duration of the concession period, which I think is 10 years”.
The Minister was accompanied by the Minster of State for Transportation, Ademola Adegoroye; Minister of Water Resources Eng. Suleiman Adamu; Managing Director, Nigeria Railway Corporation Fidet Okhiria; Chairman Governing Board Nigeria Railway Corporation Ibrahim Musa.
As Nigerdock recants operational breaches, FG may lift suspension on the facility
Headlines1 month ago
NPA lifts 2022 Maritime Cup, beats Nigerian Navy in epic final
Customs1 month ago
Customs goes after killer- smugglers.
Headlines2 months ago
Transport Minister collaborates with army, others to secure release of 23 remaining Abuja-Kaduna train attack victims
Headlines2 months ago
FG may resume Abuja-Kaduna rail services in November after installation of security measures
Car Mart2 months ago
New costs of clearing Tokunbo cars under VIN regime at Nigerian ports
Headlines1 week ago
NIMASA unveils N17.4 billion new highrise headquarters on Victoria Island