Anefi Mohammed, has called on both Transportation Minister and the Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety (NIMASA) to buckle up and save the country’s waterfront from piracy and other sea robberies.
Mohammed, who is the vice chairman, International Freight Forwarders Association (IFFA), Ports and Terminal Multi Services Limited (PTML) chapter, in an interview with INDEPENDENT, said that NIMASA does not have the equipment and manpower to fight sea piracy.
Mohammed who was also reacting to the country’s failure to qualify in category C during the recently conducted International Maritime Organisation (IMO) election, said that in the first place, the country wouldn’t have gone for the election as virtually the entire maritime infrastructure was dilapidated.
“I am not surprised that we failed in the bid. When you look at the situation in the country, you begin to ask yourself if we really have priorities. Generally, any nation that fails to develop its infrastructure, any nation that fails to listen to the yearnings of its citizens will always fumble at the international level.
“Here, we are talking of IMO, an international organization, what maritime infrastructure do we have in place or have we developed before going there in the first place?
Look at our ports that supposed to be the second revenue yielding to the country after oil. Today, look at the sorry situation of roads leading to all the ports and border stations. Do we have roads? Do we have electricity in the ports; first and foremost, we need to give priority to our infrastructure. IMO is not an Abuja gathering where we talk politics, it in about welfare and security of the maritime sector. Are we supposed to come out and vie for seat in IMO? When you say that Nigeria is giant of Africa, what I understand is giant of Africa in population.”
Mohammed called on the agencies to rise up to the occasion and take the maritime sector to the next level as we enter year 2018.
“My advice to the Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi and the DG NIMASA, Dakuku Peterside, is that both are educated, if they do not have knowledge of the maritime sector, they should bring on board those who have the knowledge and work with them. They should bring on board professionals in the field to work with. This is the only way we can move the maritime sector forward,” Mohammed advised.
Source : independent.ng