Merchant Navy Union Seeks Tax Exemptions for Nigerian Seafarers


Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr Dayo Mobereola

—Knocks Trawler Owners for Indiscriminate Termination of Sailors Employment


The Nigerian Merchant Navy Officers and Water Transporters Senior Staff Association has called on the Federal Government and the apex maritime regulatory body; Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to provide tax exemptions for Nigerian seafarers.

President of the union, Eng Bob Yousou made the appeal in his message at the Day of the Seafarer 2024 commemoration held in Lagos last week.

Eng Yousou argued that seafarers sacrificed most of their lives for humanity by being on at sea for several months, he said most of their lifetime is at sea with the roughest weather, just to make the economy of the world to go round, hence, they cannot be charged to pay taxes.

“Seafarers spend most of their lifetime at sea with the roughest weather at sea. Note that tax is levied on the place of abode, hence the need to exenipt them like: – India and Philippines” he said

The Merchant Navy boss urged NIMASA to issue a Marine Notice to all seafarers employers engaged in this slavery attitude of nonpayment of seafarers and underpayment of seafarers.

Eng Yousou urged NIMASA to take caution about the non-payment of wages and under payment to Nigerian Seafarers as this is the current trend in Nigerian Maritime sector. He said that a sanction should be placed on any company with such an act.

Speaking further on the challenges being encountered by Nigerian seafarers, Eng Yousou said “Most Nigerian qualified Seafarers are unemployed, but with the implementation of the Cabotage regime, unemployment of Nigerian Seafarers will be a thing of the past. Waiver should not be an option as it is inimical to Nigerian Seafarers” he said

On indiscriminate hire and firing of seafarers, Eng Yousou indicted shipping companies, mostly fishing trawlers for termination of sailors employment without due process.

“We urge NIMASA to call the employers of Labour in this category to be mindful of disregard to the rights of an employee” he said

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