Maritime Agency calls for collective efforts in tackling piracy

David Adekunle, Lagos

The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside has said that tackling the rising cases of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea requires a multi stakeholder approach.

 
Dr. Peterside made this statement at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos on his way to Singapore to attend this year’s Singapore Maritime Week.

 
He stated that “a legal framework that prescribes stiffer sanctions, more vigorous and vigilant military led patrol and better intelligence gathering network will help but cannot be all the solution to tackling sea piracy”.
 
The NIMASA boss who noted that the activities of pirates stifle shipping and by extension commerce which is the major driver of global economy observed that “it is because of the priority attention given to tackling piracy that America created the coast guard which has so far proven effective in tackling piracy”.
 
Safe Waterways
Dr. Peterside who was asked if Nigeria is considering setting up a specialised coast guard like US, responded that every avenue will be explored towards keeping Nigerian waterways safe as well as the ships that ply them but that it requires wider consultation, highlighting that NIMASA under his leadership is already championing a number of initiatives aimed at achieving zero pirate activities in Nigerian waters.
 
While lamenting the unfortunate inclusion of Nigeria among the top three countries where pirate activities occur, the DG said that with the new fighting impetus, the trend will be reversed in no distant time as his administration is committed to repositioning NIMASA for the accomplishment of its core mandate of ensuring safe, secure shipping and a cleaner marine environment.

The NIMASA boss who is in Singapore at the invitation of the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore is billed to address a forum of maritime regulators and experts at on the topic “Indispensible Shipping: Meeting the Regulatory Requirements”.
 
Tahir