Blue Economy Ministry: Oyetola has Nothing to Offer, he cannot Deliver—Asu Beks

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Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola

By DAPO OLAWUNI

The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola has been described as a square peg in a round hole, and that he has nothing to offer the maritime industry. This were the expression of Elder Asu Beks, a doyen of maritime journalism in Nigeria.

Elder Asu Beks, Publisher, Shipping World Magazine

Asu stated this last week while speaking in an interview in preparation towards his forthcoming 70th birthday bash, a week-long activity commencing on 8th of January.

According to the maritime journalist and Publisher of popular Shipping World Magazine, President Bola Thad played politics with the appointment of Oyetola as Blue Economy Minister, adding that this has been the bane of the maritime sector.

According to him, the Federal Government must stop looking for politicians to run the ports. He said that for as long as politicians continue to be in charge of Nigerian ports administration, it will never grow.

“How do you go and establish such a critical ministry that will require a technical expertise?
Then you bring somebody who knows next to nothing about maritime to head the ministry? A ministry that we are hoping would drive this economy.

“In Nigeria, we like to politicize everything, are there no APC members that are in this industry, that are stakeholders, that are qualified?
I don’t have anything against Adegboyega Oyetola, for me, he is a fine gentleman, not controversial.

“But Mr. President should have looked for some other better job for him, not as a Minister of Marine and Blue Economy. He will not deliver”

“I don’t have faith in Oyotola, he doesn’t have the competence, look at the financial sector, look at what Mr. President did. Look at the CBN Governor,
look at the economic team. You look there, you see experts. Why do we play politics with the maritime sector? A sector that is so critical.

“When Bello-Koko leaves, the next MD of NPA should be somebody from the Nigerian Port Authority.
Let’s stop this idea of looking for politicians to run our ports, for as long as we are doing that, our ports will not grow” Asu stated

Recall that the Minister had recently signed a performance bond with heads of the various parastatals. Reacting to this, the front line maritime journalist said the performance bond amounts to nothing.

“It is not just enough for you to go and sign a performance bond, the willpower, the will has to come from this ministry, and the way this ministry is constituted, the will has to come from within.

“So I pity our ship owners. They have to put their acts together, they should stop being beggarly, they should confront government.
If they go on like this, in all our lifetime, that CVFF fund will not be disbursed” he said.

The front line maritime journalist lamented that stakeholders in the sector do not respect maritime journalist, and that they treat them as beggars, forgetting that they are also critical stakeholders.

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