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Jamoh’s two years of revolutionary stewardship in Nigeria’s maritime industry

Bashir Jamoh, DG, NIMASA
Eyewitness reporter
On March 10th, 2020, exactly two years today, Dr Bashir Jamoh officially took over from his predecessor, Dr Dakuku Peterside, as the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA).
During the handing over ceremony which took place at the Corporate Headquarters of the agency, Dakuku Peterside, while handing over the mantle of leadership to Dr Jamoh,  said he could not have wished for a better successor because Jamoh, a “homegrown” administrator per excellence, possesses the requisite institutional knowledge that would immensely benefit the industry.
Dakuku couldn’t have been more accurate about Jamoh because the maritime industry has witnessed unprecedented changes in character and contents since the Kaduna state-born, hard-core technocrat took over.
The whirlwind of impactful changes which were initiated by Jamoh has touched all the facets of maritime administration such as maritime security, maritime safety, port state control, flag state control, maritime labour, capacity building and even the staff of the agency have benefitted from the immense managerial capacity of Jamoh through enhanced welfare packages.
For the first time in 17 years, the piracy level in the notorious Gulf of Guinea drastically reduced within the two years in office of Jamoh, a feat which attracted commendation of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).
Below are the chronicles of the achievements of Jamoh- led administration within the two years he assumed duties as the Director-General of NIMASA.



The Agency continues to improve its port and flag state functions which is the core of maritime safety. The performance of the Agency in this regard in the last 4 years is highlighted below: 

Port State Inspection (PSI): 

Year  PSI  % Diff 
2017  525 
2018  659  38% (Increase) 
2019 725  10% (Increase) 
2020 510  -29.65 (Decrease) 

Total port state inspection in 2019 was 726 vessels of the 5,035 vessels calls which represent a 10% improvement from the preceding year and 14.42% of the total ship call. This is however short of the 15% requirement under IMO by 0.8% of which we are working hard to surpass. 

Total port state inspections in 2020 were 510 of 4,728 vessel calls. (COVID-19 lockdown impacted negatively on the Port State Inspections) 

Year  FSI  % Diff 
2018  1,737 
2019 2,580  49% (Increase) 
2020 2,244  13% decrease 

In 2019, the Agency performed a total of 2,580 flag state inspections representing 2,123 renewal inspections, 276 condition surveys and 181 Random Flag State Surveys. This showed a 49% increase from the 1,737 Total Flag State Inspections carried out in 2018 comprising 1,241 Flag State Renewal Inspections, 381 Condition Surveys and 115 Random Flag State Surveys. However, the decrease in 2020 is attributed to the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

Marine incidents/accidents: 

Sadly, the Agency recorded 22 marine incidents in 2019 and 21 in 2018. Investigations were carried out while some are still ongoing. 

NIMASA has put in tremendous efforts to mitigate the tide of maritime insecurity in Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea through several maritime domain awareness interventions and collaborative efforts. 


  • Passage of the Suppression of Piracy and other Maritime Offences Bill 
  1. Establishment of integrated national maritime surveillance and security infrastructure 
  2. International Ship and Port Facility Security (Code) Implementation: The implementation of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code has steadily impacted the level of security in the nation’s port areas and facilities.
  3. Resuscitation of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System(GMDSS) Equipment 
  4. The Regional Maritime Awareness Capacity (RMAC) Centre 
  5. International collaboration: NIMASA is currently engaging international stakeholders, including BIMCO, INTERTANKO, INTERCARGO, International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and Oil Companies International Maritime Forum-OCIMF, under the auspices of NIMASA/Industry Maritime Security Work Group (NIWG) to entrench coordinated response to piracy attacks 
  6. Institutionalization of Collaboration with National Authorities: The Agency has spearheaded the institutionalization of the collaboration between her and other frontline maritime agencies for improved maritime safety and security and efficient port operations. 


Human Capacity Development 

Statutory financial contribution to Maritime Academy, Oron 

Nigerian Seafarers Development Program (NSDP): 40/60 ratio 

50/50 ratio 100% 

  • Currently, the Agency has trained over 2600 Nigerian Seafarers in various credible maritime institutions UK, Egypt, Philippines, Malaysia, etc. 
  • Recently, the Agency secured the placement of over 400 cadets on board ships for the mandatory SEA-TIME training to make them globally competitive and employable. 
  • NIMASA also sent some of its staff on long term training abroad to build internal capacities in various aspects of the maritime industry at the prestigious World Maritime University. 


Procurement of the 5th largest modular floating dockyard in Africa to reduce the cost of ship repairs and maintenance 

This milestone achievement comes under a unique Fund known as the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF), designed to provide financial assistance to Nigerian Operators in domestic coastal shipping to own vessels and enhance their competitiveness. 

Fiscal and Monetary Policy Initiatives: We have continued our engagement with the MDAs to entrench appropriate fiscal and monetary policy initiatives to pave way for the competitive participation of indigenous operators in shipping activities in Nigeria. These include but are not limited to: 

  • A push for the change in terms of trade from FOB to CIF for the affreightment of crude oil (NNPC) • Single-digit interest rate for the maritime sector (CBN/NEXIM BANK/AFRIEXIM)
• Concessionalforeignexchangerateforshipacquisition(CBN)
• EngagementwithOfficeoftheVicePresident/EconomicManagementTeam 

We continued our engagement with state governments to buy into our cargo support initiative aimed at creating a cargo pool for affreightment by indigenous operators. 

 Ship Tonnage Growth: Aggressive repositioning of the Nigerian Ship Registration Office (NSRO) 

  •   The Nigerian Ship Registration Office recorded 13.8% tonnage growth from 2018 to 2019. 

  •   This trajectory of growth was negatively impacted by the global covid-19 pandemic. 

  •    However, the Nigerian Ship Registry ranks second in tonnage measurement in Africa after Liberia which operates an open and more flexible registry. 
 Remodelling and commissioning of NIMASA Knowledge Centre E-Library
 The facility is open to staff, students/researchers and external stakeholders/maritime operators to increase the knowledge base of the 
Nigerian Maritime Sector 


The Executive Management of NIMASA recognized from the outset the significant impact of the Corona Virus (COVID-19) Pandemic on the Transport Sector in Particular and the Global socio-economic activities in general, hence set up a multi-disciplinary Committee within the Agency to provide an informed risk assessment with appropriate responses. 

A major intervention of the Agency in ensuring the continued flow of trade was the declaration of Seafarers as KEY WORKERS to facilitate vital crew changes and excuse duty. Nigeria was among the first maritime nations to declare such and was commended by the IMO. 

Corporate Social Responsibility support to Federal and State government by the following donations to Federal & State authorities: 

  1. Cash donations of 30 Million Naira (N30,000,000.00) to the Federal Government Committee on COVID-19 Intervention

20 Million Naira (N20,000,000.00) cash donation to the Lagos State COVID-19 Intervention Task Force
B. Provided human capital/personnel support in the following areas: 

 Medical Personnel  Drivers
 Logistic officers 

  1. Deployment of the Agency’s Fire brigade trucks to fumigate Apapa and its environs. 


State 36-Seater Coaster Bus  16-Seater coaster Bus  Ambu-lance  Fast intervention Marine Vessels  Personal protective Equipment (PPEs) 
Abuja  1 1 1
Lagos  1 1 1 2
Rivers  1 1 2 (Onne and Port Harcourt) 
Delta  1 1 1
Cross River  2 (PSC to source)  1
Kaduna  2


The Agency presented relief items to victims of flood disasters across the nation. Also, internally displaced persons as a result of the insurgency were not left out of Agency’s Corporate Social Responsibility.
Among the 20 states covered across the 6 geo-political zones are: 

  • Kaduna State
  • Kano State
  • Cross River State 

  • Delta State 

  • Lagos State 

  • Niger State 

VII. Benue State VIII. Ogun State IX. Ondo State 


The IMO in December 2020 applauded our efforts in the fight against piracy in the Gulf of Guinea Region
The Specialized Organ of the United Nation had earlier supported our action declaring Seafarers as key workers to facilitate crew changes during the COVID-19 induced international lockdown. 

Recently, the IMO gave institutional backing to NIMASA’s Marine Litter Action Plan. These and many more are evidence of our collaboration with the IMO.

The global shipping and economic climate was greatly impacted by the following  in 2020 all through 2021:

  • COVID-19
  • Lockdown
  • Disruption in the global supply chain; and
  • Slow down the economic activities across the globe.

Maritime Safety:

  • Flag State Implementation (FSO) – Vessels inspected/surveyed in accordance with the safety requirements of the MSA 2007

Conduct of Condition survey for Flag Registration

Comparing the number of vessels surveyed for flag registration relative to the previous year, it can be observed that the 2021 figure (489 vessels) is 43.6% higher than the total number of condition surveys carried out in 2020 (276 vessels).

Para-meter Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total
Total No of Condition Surveys for Flag Registration conducted in 2020 32 29 36 14 7 22 24 28 10 31 18 25 276
Total No of Condition Surveys for Flag Registration conducted in 2021 26 19 19 24 32 75 74 44 34 50 43 49 489
  • Port State Control (PCS) 229 foreign vessels boarded to ensure that such vessels maintained safety/pollution standard while in our ports and waters.

Port State Control Implementation

Comparing the number of vessels boarded relative to the previous year, it can be observed that the 2021 figure (673 vessels) is 24.2% higher than the total number of inspections carried out in 2020 (510 vessels).

  • Examination and Certification

Total exam conducted for officers at various capacities and certification for years 2020 and 2021


  • The total number of examinations conducted 829
  • Total candidate passed and certificated 264, forming a percentage of 32%
  • The total candidates failed 565, forming a percentage of 68%
  • Total certificate revalidated 2021: 246 certificates.


  • Total number of examinations conducted 610
  • Total candidates passed and certificated 251, forming a percentage of 41%
  • Total candidates failed 359, forming a percentage of 59%
  • Total certificate revalidated 2020: 132 certificates.


  • The total number of examinations conducted 1,251
  • Total candidates passed and certificated 926, forming a percentage of 74%
  • Total candidates failed 325, forming a percentage of 26%


  • The total number of examinations conducted 1,327
  • Total candidate passed and certificated 990, forming a percentage of 74%
  • Total candidates failed 337, forming a percentage of 26%
  • Online Seafarers Certificate of Competency (CoC) Verification Platform reactivated

The project has drastically reduced the forgery of Nigerian certificates and enhanced the employment of Nigerian Seafarers in the maritime sector. 

  • Enforcement of Safety Regulations on Barges and Tug Boards (Operation Sting Ray)
  • ISO 9001 Quality Assurance Certification for the operation of the Maritime Safety Department Approval of ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System for the Maritime Safety and Seafarers Standard Department by Bureau Veritas (BV) in April 2020.
  • Revival of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) equipment – Necessary for sending alerts in an emergency. The GMDSS is to ensure the safety of life at sea.
  • Marine Accident Investigation Data/Information

Marine Pollution Prevention and Control

  • Marine Environment Management 

Nigeria has entered into MoU with Maritime Transport Coordination Centre (MTCC) on Climate Change for Africa to commence activities towards ensuring GHG emission reduction in the maritime sector with emphasis on achieving 0.5% Sulphur Oxide (SO2) in Bunker fuel oil.

  • Awareness creation
  • Establishment of bunker (fuel oil) supply register 
  • Accreditation of laboratories for testing bunker oil
  • Capacity building on the emission of reduction; and
  • Establishment of Compliance monitoring and Enforcement Team (CMET)
  • IOPC 92

Produced manual for the admissibility of claims under the fund.

The manual is to contain the price index for determining the quantum of claims for settlement in case of oil pollution.

  • Update on the Trinity Spirit FPSO

Maritime Security:

  • Deep Blue Project:

The Deep Blue Project was flagged off by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday, 21st May, 2021.

The Agency has taken delivery of key assets of the Deep Blue Project including:

  • Two Special Mission Vessels (SMVs)
  • Seventeen Fast Interceptor Boats (FIBs)
  • Two Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs)
  • Sixteen Armoured Vehicles

Some of these assets have been deployed to the Nigerian Navy for its operational use.

  • The Regional Maritime Awareness Capacity (RMAC) Centre

Provision of the Regional Maritime Awareness Capacity (RMAC) Centre Kirikiri by the US Navy Upgraded to SEA VISION to allow for monitoring of vessels along the West and Central African region.

  • NIMASA/Industry Working Group

International collaboration among major international stakeholders in the maritime/shipping sector.

To entrench coordinated response to piracy and other criminalities on the Nigerian waters and prompt reportage and escalation of marine incidences to where the action is most expected and to provide navigational advisory to mariners.

  • The Maritime  Security & Intelligence Unit

For intelligence and information gathering and sharing that can help to stop piracy.

  • Collaboration with Security Agencies

At the strategic level, the Agency ensures a close liaison with the offices of the NSA , CNS, Chief of Air Staff, Chief of Army Staff and the IGP.

The Agency has played a pivotal role in the institutionalization of the collaboration between her and other government agencies for improved maritime security and safety.


  • ISPS

The total number of currently operational onshore facilities in the ISPS unit is Ninety-eight (98) divided into six maritime zones.

For ease of administration because of their locations & accessibility, some zones are further subdivided.

In 2020 VIEs carried out as detailed below for the four (4) quarters

  1. Lagos subdivisions
    1. Apapa – 9
    2. Kirikiri – 12 
    3. Ijora & Ijegun – 8 in first & second quarter & 11 in last quarter 
    4. Tincan – 8 
  2. Port Harcourt – 11
  3. Calabar – 9
  4. Onne – 9
  5. Eket – 4
  6. Warri – 16

Total 87 (Eighty–Seven)

In 2021 VIEs carried out as detailed below for the four (4) quarters

  1. Lagos subdivisions
    1. Apapa – 10
    2. Kirikiri – 12 
    3. Ijora – 7
    4. Ijegun – 7
    5. Tincan – 8
  2. Port Harcourt – 13
  3. Calabar – 8
  4. Onne – 10
  5. Eket – 3
  6. Warri – 17

Total 96 (Ninety–Six)

Shipping Promotion and Capacity Development

  • Shipping Promotion
    • Concessions to boost indigenous ownership
    • Strengthen enforcement of Cabotage to boost local participation
    • Capactiy Development 
    • Human – Natural Seafarers Development Programme (NSDP) – Training of over 2,600 Nigerian Seafarers in various maritime institutions worldwide and a good number of them who have completed their programmes are no gainfuully employed onboard vessels.
    • Assets – Approval for CVFF disbursement to assist in vessel acquisition by indigenous Nigerian Shipowners – Most Nigerian Operators in domestic coastal shipping now own vessels and enhance their competitiveness. 
    • Learning Infrastructure Upgrade
      • Completion of the renovation and furnishing of the conventional library
      • Digitization of the convention library books/other resource materials
      • Renewal of e-library management software:

2022 in Focus

  • Strengthen our maritime safety and security enforcement mechanisms
  • Organise a stakeholders’ engagement towards harnessing the potentials of a blue economy
  • Enhance revenue for increased contribution to the consolidated revenue fund
  • Movement of the Agency’s Headquarters to its newly acquired building in Victoria Island.
  • Operationalization of the floating dock
  • Establishment of regional maritime safety and security training centre
  • Build regional maritime search and rescue clinic
  • Resuscitate Lokoja office
  • Construction of NIMASA zonal offices (Central zone and Eastern zone)
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House of Reps gives NIMASA green light to disburse CVFF –appoints audit firm to coordinate, monitor  disbursement

Hon. Legor Idagbo
The eyewitness reporter
The House of Representatives has given the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) a clean bill of health over the controversial Cabotage Vessels Financing Funds(CVFF) and consequently directed the agency to disburse the funds.
It would be recalled that the lawmakers, a few weeks ago, halted the planned disbursement after long and painstaking groundwork made by the Ministry of Transportation and NIMASA towards the disbursement process.
The House had raised concerns over the funds, said to be about #700m, and decided to ask its committee on Nigerian Contents Development and Monitoring to investigate the funds.
This followed a motion during its sitting last month on the matter and subsequently directed the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to stop the planned disbursement of the fund.
However, after concluding its investigation, the House found tenable the need to disburse the funds to the eligible indigenous ship owners.
Addressing journalists in Abuja Thursday, the Chairman of the committee, Hon. Legor Idagbo said that its investigations indicated that due process was followed, informing that the disbursement can now be made.
“The House of Representatives at its sitting on Tuesday, 4 May 2023, deliberated on a motion on the Planned Disbursement of $700 Million Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund, and investigate the Total Accrual of the Fund, and referred same to the House Committee on Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring to, amongst other resolutions, investigate and urge the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to immediately stop the planned disbursement of $700 million to Nigerian citizens and companies and to lay before the floor of the House, an audited statement of account showing all monies that have accrued to the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund not later than fourteen (14) days from the date of this resolution.
“The Committee requested the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and the Ministry of Transportation to provide detailed information on the total amount accrued to the Fund and disbursements since inception.
“The Committee met with the Minister of Transportation and the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency ({NIMASA) on Thursday, 11 May 2023 to find out about the details concerning the matter.
” After a thorough analysis of the various submissions on the matter coupled with the explanations given by the Ministry and NIMASA, the Committee discovered that due process was followed in the planned disbursement of the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund.
“The Committee notes that the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund (CVFF) is a fund that was set up in 2003 by the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act.
” The Fund was established for the purpose of developing indigenous ship acquisition capacity, and to provide financial assistance to indigenous shipping operators.
“The Committee further notes that there is a lack of Capacity amongst indigenous/ Domestic Coastal operators in Nigeria, thus the reason Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPC) still awards contracts to foreign shipping Companies in contravention of the Cabotage and Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act.
“Some of these awards have been previously investigated by the Committee which led to their cancellation.
“It was also discovered that the total funds of $360m in the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund (CVFF) account with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) represents 50%, while the remaining counterpart funds of 50% is from stakeholders and Banks which is 15% and 35% respectively.
“NIMASA should go ahead with the disbursement of the Cabotage Vessel Finance Fund (CVFF) in compliance with the extant laws and laid down guidelines for the said disbursement.
“To ensure the disbursement does not violate any of the extant laws made by the National Assembly, the following persons were nominated to supervise the disbursement process:
“Rt. Hon. (Barr.) Legor Idagbo  – Chairman ii. Hon. Henry Nwawuba – Member iii. | Mrs. Kehinde Bolade Olaiya – Committee Clerk.
“An Audit firm, Stratford Hill and Co. was appointed by the committee as the coordinating enforcement auditor for the CVFF.
“The Committee applauds NNPC for its commitment to awarding the shipping contracts to indigenous companies that have built capacity to the level where they can successfully execute these contracts.
“The Committee is grateful to the leadership of the House for the confidence bestowed on it to carry out the investigation”.
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President Tinubu appoints Gbajabiamila Chief of Staff

Gbajabiamila , Tinubu
 President Bola Tinubu has appointed Femi Gbajabiamila, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, as his Chief of Staff.

An authoritative source in the Presidency confirmed the development on Thursday.

The source said the president finally made the decision after wide consultations on the contending candidates.

Gbajabiamila has been a member of the House of Representatives since 2012 and has just been re-elected to the House in the last elections.

The choice of Gbajabiamila by the president is not a surprise to many political pundits as he has been a very close ally to the president.

They are part of the brains behind the formation of the All-Progressives Party (APC).

He will now have to forgo his seat in the House of Representatives if he accepts the appointment.

Olufemi Hakeem Gbajabiamila CFR, is a Nigerian lawyer and foundation member of the APC.

He has been a member of the House of Representatives since 2019.

Gbajabiamila was born in Lagos in 1962 and attended Igbobi College for his secondary education and the University of Lagos as part of his education.

He is married to Salamatu Gbajabiamila.

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Maritime media, NUJ mourn as Ray Ugochukwu passes on to glory

Ray Ugochukwu
The eyewitness reporter
The media confraternity of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Lagos State Council and the maritime media, was thrown into a deep shock and mourning Thursday at the sudden demise of Mr Ray Ugochukwu, a crack journalist of international repute.
The entire members of the NUJ and the maritime media, his immediate constituency, received the news of his death, which was broken by Mr Leye Ajayi, the Chairman of the NUJ Lagos council, in a terse message posted on the council’s WhatsApp platform, with mixed emotion of sadness, shock and disbelief.
Shell-shocked, most colleagues of the deceased, who thought the announcement was a joke taken too far, make frantic calls to the NUJ council officials who confirmed the unfortunate incident.
As the rude reality of the death of the erudite maritime journalist sank in, many of them paid glowing tributes to the man widely regarded as the encyclopedia of the maritime press and a repository of wise sayings.
In its statement on the death of Mr Ugochukwu, Leye Ajayi eulogised the huge reportorial qualities of the deceased who has practised journalism for over 30 years
“With heavy hearts, we mourn the death of a media giant, a versatile Unionist and a brilliant journalist, Mr Ray Ugochukwu who passed on on Thursday.

“The death of Ray came as a big shock to the union.

“We are going to miss his courageous attributes and mentorship.

“He was also one of the pillars of the Lagos Council of NUJ and served the union meritoriously in his capacities as the Chairman of, the Seminar Committee; and as a Member, the Committee on Milestone Recognition of Media Icons In Nigeria.

“He spent most of his life in ensuring the advancement of Maritime Reporting as well as the welfare of Journalists.

“He worked in several media houses.

“Among his giant strides, he was a former President of the Maritime Reporters’ Association of Nigeria (MARAN); President, Maritime Journalists Association of Nigeria (MAJAN); and a former Chairman of the Daily Times Chapel of NUJ.

“The legacies of Ray are indelible and will exist forever.

“May God grant his soul eternal rest” the Lagos NUJ said in a statement signed by Leye Ajayi, the Council Chairman and Tunde Olalere, the Council Secretary.

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