By Dapo Olawuni
Frontline indigenous shipowner, Capt Taiwo Akinpelumi has commended the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) for the commissioning of permanent offices in various geopolitical zones of the country, saying that it would assist Nigerian maritime industry in general.
According to him, when there are zonal offices, it also gives Nigerian seafarers a choice on where to take their certificate examinations.
Capt Akinpelumi is also a member of the Nigerian Shipowners Association (NISA) Integrity Group.
Minister of Transportation, Muazu Jaji Sambo had commissioned the NIMASA Abuja office on Tuesday.
Speaking at the event, NIMASA Director General, Dr Bashir Jamoh noted that since the Abuja zonal office was established in 1987, it has been operating from a rented apartment with constant trepidation of her landlords.
He hinted that the new building will also house the much awaited regional maritime bank
Speaking with our correspondent, Capt Taiwo Akinpelumi said “It is a laudable project in two ways, first is the fact that the agency has been renting apartments, expending resources on rentage of properties over the years, if you quantify this, it would run into Millions, if not Billions of Naira.
“The mandate of NIMASA is not only National, it is international in nature, so, we as stakeholders support the fact that government has deemed it necessary to grant approval for them to have a befitting office.
“Secondly, as a regulatory agency, offices in prime locations all over the country is very necessary, just like we have in the UK, Australia, Singapore and so on.
“We want to attain the situation whereby even the seafarers, they have their training, examination and certification, a seafarer can attend training in Lagos and decide to come to Abuja for his certification examination. The fact that they are trying to replicate it in the six geopolitical zones is a welcome development.
“I believe that this would enhance productivity and efficiency, gone were the days when you were living in a rented apartment, when they are conscripted, but now they have this beautiful office, and the fact that the Minister has charged them, to whom much is given, much is expected” he said