By DAPO OLAWUNI
Ocean Ambassadors Foundation, a Non Government Organization (NGO) has honored three key agencies in the maritime sector with an award for their role played in ensuring that secondary school students embrace and chose a carrier part in maritime sector.
At its 1st Educators and Maritime Stakeholders Roundtable and Awards which held in Lagos on Monday with the theme; Knowledge and Blue Economy; The Future of Nigeria, the NGO recognized the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN)
The Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) was also recognized with an award of recognition.
Personalities that were honored for their meritorious service to the maritime sector are; Hajia Lami Tumaka, Director of Special Duties at NIMASA, Dr. Felicia Mogo also from NIMASA, Registrar of Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) Barr Samuel Nwakohu and Lagos Area Manager of NIWA, Eng Sarat Braimah.
Others are; Mrs Yinka Ogunde, education icon of the year, NEPC boss, Segun Awolowo, and Mrs Christabel Onyekekwe.
The keynote speaker at the event, Deputy Comptroller of Customs, Dera Nnadi highlighted some of the career opportunities in the maritime sector, even as he commended Ocean Ambassadors Foundation for their strides in encouraging youths enlightenment about maritime potentials.
Nnadi who is in charge of enforcement and conpliance at Tin Can Island Customs Command urged the foundation to collaborate with the Ministry of Education to include maritime related subjects in the school curriculum to grow the interest of students in the maritime sector.
Nnadi said there should be deliberate effort on the part of federal government to increase the budget of maritime institutions in order for them to support NGOs. He further called for CSR for youth capacity and development in maritime.
“The maritime sector needs to go close to the ministry of education and try to adjust the school curriculum where students would be taught maritime”
Earlier in her address, Principal Partner of Vow Ventures, owners of the NGO, Mrs Violet Olaitan Williams said the idea behind the event is to expose the young ones to the potentials that abound in the blue economy.
She noted that the world today is talking about blue economy which has to do with tapping and maximizing their God given resources in the oceans and Nigerian youths must be aware of these potentials.
Without sensitization, she said it would be difficult for Nigeria to plug into the sustainable development goals for blue economy for the African nations not to talk of the global level.