NIMASA partners NRC, Bayelsa on wreck removal, recycling

  • Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki (left), Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Bashir Jamoh, and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, rub minds during the Ministerial Retreat in Lagos…over the weekend

By Anthony Nwachukwu

The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) said it has concluded arrangements for the removal and recycling of wrecks and derelicts recovered from the Nigerian waters.

Partnering NIMASA in this drive are the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), which already has a foundry in Lagos, and the Bayelsa State Government, the agency’s Director-General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, disclosed.

Jamoh, who spoke in Lagos during a ministerial retreat held over the weekend, organised by the Federal Ministry of Transportation to assess the performance of its agencies in order to improve service delivery, said the ultimate aim was wealth creation from waste, while providing jobs for Nigerians.

Jamoh commended the minister for approving the creation of Maritime Intelligence Unit and the NIMASA Maritime Stakeholders Experience Contact Centre (MSECC), both intended to improve intelligence gathering and enhance stakeholder-communication for sustainable growth of the industry.

He disclosed that the agency’s automation drive has led to the integrated use of technology in the Certificate of Competency (CoC) verification process, and consequently a drop in manual verification practice.

“In 2020, the number of manual verification of CoCs dropped from 4,112 in 2019 to 2,750, representing 33 per cent drop. There was a total online verification of 9,723 in 2020,” NIMASA Assistant Director, Public Relations, Osagie Edward, quoted Jamoh to say.

Meanwhile, he explained that NIMASA was working with the ministry to resolve all grey areas hindering the disbursement of the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF) to ensure seamless distribution.

“The CVFF is in the Treasury Single Account and there are guidelines for the disbursement, one of which is the use of Primary Lending Institutions (PLIs),” Jamoh stated. “We have advertised for Expression of Interest from interested PLIs and are following due process to ensure disbursement according to the guidelines.”

Jamoh explained that 11 banks made the shortlist, which has been forwarded to the supervising Ministry of Transportation for further actions, just as “the ministry has identified some grey areas, which are being addressed to ensure prompt disbursement of the CVFF.”

He further disclosed that 446 beneficiaries of the NSDP programme were currently undergoing sea-time training, while 351 have been assigned to maritime training institutes and were in the process of boarding for sea-time.

Also, 93 beneficiaries were currently undergoing CoC, 360 had completed sea-time training and were awaiting CoC issuance, while 368 were already fully employed. Similarly, he said the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) equipment at Tarkwa Bay and Kirikiri for vessel monitoring and response to distress calls in the sub-region were already fully installed, with the capacity to cover nine countries in the West and Central African Region.

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