DAKUKU says maritime catalyst for industrialisation
.Stakeholders laud NIMASA’s leadership role in Africa
By Francis Chidiebere & Udeme Clement
“For Nigeria to effectively move away from an oil-dependent economy and industrialise, it must develop the blue economy. This was the position of the Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside and top players in the maritime industry, at the 2018 World Maritime Day celebration, in Lagos.
According to him, “NIMASA is taking various steps to ensure the growth of the sector for the overall economic benefit of the country. We want to ensure that our maritime sector remains virile and this is the reason we are making moves to safeguard our maritime domain, because we cannot talk about shipping without taking safety, as well as security of our maritime domain seriously.”
Dakuku pointed out, “The total spectrum maritime security strategy being put in place by the agency would ensure that the maritime sub-sector tackles criminality hampering its growth. The ultimate goal of the agency is to make Nigeria one of the safest maritime domains in Africa”.
Commenting on the Executive Order of the Federal Government on Ease of Doing Business, Dakuku said, “NIMASA has succeeded in reducing issuance time for bill and sailing clearance for vessels to 24 hours, thereby drastically reducing the delay in vessel turnaround time.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Sabiu Zakari, who represented the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi, said Nigeria receives and generates a lot of cargoes, as such, it must take advantage of its geographic position to grow its economy through effective maritime development.
Zakari said, “Nigeria enjoys larger share in the movement of cargoes due to its location along the Gulf of Guinea, which is a transit and strategic route for movement of cargo across Africa. It is therefore, imperative that the route is secured to fully harness the benefits of maritime trade.”
In the same vein, Nigeria’s Alternate Permanent Secretary to IMO, Mr. Bala Dikko, said in recent times Nigeria’s relationship with the United Nations organ had improved. He commended the leadership role NIMASA is playing in the West African sub-region, stating that security in the region has greatly improved due to the renewed collaboration being championed by Nigeria among the maritime administrations of the sub-region.