Stranded seafarers escape Ukraine, others trapped – ILO
Some of the estimated 1,000 seafarers trapped in Ukraine have escaped, the International Labour Organization and industry officials told Reuters.
Several foreign cargo ships have been struck by crossfire in Ukraine since the Russian invasion began on 24th February and UN agencies have called for urgent action to protect some 1,000 seafarers, including in the besieged port city of Mariupol that has been under bombardment for weeks.
An estimated 100 vessels have been prevented from departing because of risks of drifting sea mines, industry sources say.
Fabrizio Barcellona, seafarers’ section coordinator at the International Transport Workers’ Federation, said the “vast bulk” of the seafarers, from at least 20 countries including India, Syria, Egypt, Turkey the Philippines and Bangladesh, as well as Ukraine and Russia, had left, traveling overland to Poland and Romania.
He cited information from Philippine government sources, saying seafarers of the Philippines had left.
“A small number [of the estimated 1,000] remain stranded and unable to return home due to the ongoing threat of potential military crossfire,” Barcellona said.
An ILO spokesperson said in an email that some seafarers were still trapped on their ships, within earshot of shellfire, without giving details.
Russia said on Wednesday it had taken control of Mariupol’s trading port and had freed what it called “hostages” from vessels.
On 11th April, a letter was circulated to International Maritime Organization members by Dominica maritime authorities about its ship that sank in Mariupol this month, saying the crew was hiding on other vessels “under an immense amount of intense fear and distress.”
Barcellona said the ITF, which represents some 200 seafarers’ unions, had been seeking to establish “blue corridors”, or safe passage routes, but this was impossible due to mines.
The International Committee of the Red Cross urged parties to the conflict to allow civilians, including commercial crews, to leave and said it would raise this with authorities.
Traffic gridlock returns to Apapa port as Federal government closes Total bridge for maintainance works
“Given the impact the closure will have on Port users, the Authority in partnership with LASTMA, Police, FRSC, and the Nigerian Navy have worked out alternative routes and are on the ground to manage the traffic situation in the affected areas.
“The Authority wishes to solicit the understanding and cooperation of all stakeholders as we continue to support measures to mitigate the temporary disruptions, the NPA pleaded.
NIMASA collaborates with NCC to regulate submarine cable operation for enhanced navigational safety on Nigerian waters
The eyewitness reporter
Apparently alarmed by the indiscriminate laying of communication cables and pipelines underneath the Nigerian waters by telecommunications operators and other allied professionals which has the potential of harming the safe navigation of ships, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, (NIMASA) has engaged the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in a strategic discussion to forge a formidable synergy with other relevant stakeholders with a view to developing a regulatory framework to provide operational guidelines for submarine Cable and Pipeline Operators in Nigeria.
Officials of both organs of Government in Lagos reached this agreement at a pre Audit meeting on submarine cable regulation.
The Director General of NIMASA Dr. Bashir Jamoh, who chaired the meeting, which also had the Director General of the Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR) Mr. Dasuki Arabi in attendance, noted that the Agency is committed to the Ease of Doing Business while implementing International Conventions which Nigeria has ratified and domesticated.
He noted that with Nigeria now a destination for global communication players, the time has come to prevent unregulated underwater cable laying, which might become hazardous to shipping.
According to him, “It is worthy to note that marine cable laying has been ongoing for over two decades in Nigerian waters.
“Our focus is to ensure the safety of navigation of shipping in Nigerian waters with all these underwater cables being laid.
“NIMASA is actually developing the guidelines to regulate submarine cable operators in line with the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, UNCLOS; which we have ratified and NIMASA is the Agency of Government in Nigeria responsible for its implementation.
“Collaboration is a key component of ease of doing business in the best interest of the country and we will work closely with the NCC to achieve this”.
On his part, the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Professor Umar Garba Danbatta, who was represented by the Director, Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement, Efosa Idehen, noted that the stakeholders’ dialogue strategy adopted by NIMASA in developing the guidelines would ensure a win-win situation, urging NIMASA management to include the Ministry of Justice, a request NIMASA DG immediately granted.
Also speaking at the meeting was the Director General of the Bureau of Public Service Reforms Mr. Dasuki Arabi, who commended NIMASA and NCC for adopting effective Inter-Agency collaboration to avert a potential challenge for the country in the future.
NIMASA had notified submarine and cable operators in Nigeria of a soon-to-be-implemented regulatory guideline for submarine cables and pipelines in Nigeria, in line with the provisions of UNCLOS.
NIMASA and the NCC agreed to identify and resolve areas of likely regulatory overlaps, ensuring a regulatory framework based on consultation to engender the attainment of Nigeria’s digital economy transformation.
Officials of the Federal Ministry of Environment and representatives of Submarine Cable operators in Nigeria were also at the meeting.
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“He passed on about an hour ago at a private hospital in Abuja. The Janaza prayers hold after the Zuhr prayers (1 pm) at the National Mosque, Abuja In Shaa Allah,”
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