The chairman National Seafarers Welfare Board, Kunle Folarin has urged the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency-NIMASA to focus on sea time training of cadets of the Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme-NSDP.
Folarin made the plea in an interview with Voice of Nigeria in Lagos as maritime activities closed on Friday.
He said lack of sea-time training had been a major challenge since the past 10 years.
The maritime expert said “there is need to revamp human capacity building in NIMASA through the NSDP.’’
He explained that NIMASA should be able to review the NSDP under six months.
Folarin, also chairman Port Consultative Council of Nigeria (PCCN) said that competent managers were needed in NIMASA.
He stated that, “the nation had a lot of challenges in the Gulf of Guinea, including piracy and maritime security.
It becomes very imperative that all personnel working in NIMASA must be conversant with international conventions which they should implement.”
“NIMASA should also generate revenue from the functions it handles.
“Its functions also include international shipping and keeping the water pollution-free,’’ the maritime expert said.
Folarin further stated that the critical issue of shipping development must be at the forefront stressing that “Nigeria cannot be having up to 5,000 ships calling without partaking in international trade.”
In the week under review, the Nigerian Ports Authority-NPA said it would partner with VON on news dissemination to manage its reputation.
Also during the week under Review, the Zonal Coordinator, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Zone `A’, Assistant Comptroller-General Eporwei Edike said that the service would reciprocate the support of both Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and Nigerian Air Force (NAF).
Edike said this during his visits to Immigration Service Zone “A’’ and the Headquarters, Logistics Command, Nigerian Air Force, Lagos.
He commended the support of both Nigeria Immigration Service and Nigerian Air Force officers who were deployed to some border commands, adding that their support had enabled Customs to achieve numerous successes.
“I was so impressed with the support of Immigration and Air Force when I visited Customs Command at Igbeti, Oyo/Osun, Ogun, Ondo/Ekiti and Seme Commands.
I have no option than to visit their superior officers and cement the existing relationship among the agencies,’’ he said.
Edike said that Customs could not operate alone without the support of other agencies.
He urged the agencies to write for provisional release of their consignments through the head of their particular commands, to avoid delay in clearing their equipment.
“This pre-arrival process will save the consignments from demurrage,’’ the zonal coordinator said.
The Assistant Comptroller-General of Immigration, Adamu Musa commended the efforts of the Customs zonal coordinator for deeming it fit to visit the zone.
“I feel fulfilled and honoured and I think my mission is completed with the visit of the Customs zonal coordinator to our office.
The nation will not be protected if Immigration officers are not there to control and check the behaviour of human beings.
Customs officers are also there to check equipment coming through both the ports and border stations,’’ Musa said.
The Air Officer Commanding (AOC), Logistics Command, AVM Mohammed Muhammadu also commended Customs for appreciating officers at the border stations.
He said that the Air Force would not relent in assisting Customs in protecting the nation.
Muhammadu applauded Customs for giving the consignments of the service the deserved priority due to the sensitivity of the equipment.
“I will not relent in supporting Customs to meet and if possible surpass the revenue target given set by the Federal Government,” he added.