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Transport

Reps To Fast-Track Siren Bill

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The House of Representatives Committee on Inter-Governmental Affairs, on Sunday said that it would collaborate with its Senate counterpart to ensure the passage of the bill to regulate the use of siren in the country.

The bill which seeks to regulate the use of siren among certain categories of public officers, was passed by the House in July, 2009 and sent to the Senate for concurrence.

Those included in the ban are first ladies, governors’ wives, service chiefs among others, while those permitted to use siren are the President, Vice president, Senate President, Speaker of House of Representatives and the Chief Justice of Nigeria.

Others are deputy senate president, deputy speaker, traditional rulers, House of Representatives and speakers of state Houses of Assembly and their deputies but must be restricted to their states.

Rep. Leo Ogor (PDP-Delta), the chairman, House of Representatives committee on Inter-Governmental Affairs told newsmen that the House had concluded its part of the work on the bill by passing it.

He said that the passage of bill was a clear function of both the Senate and the House.

“The House of Representatives concluded work on the bill and passed it over to the Senate who will in turn concur on it and send to the clerk of the National Assembly for onward transmission to the President for Assent.

“All I need to do in this situation is to notify our committee chairman in the Senate to expedite action on the bill.

He said that since the bill had been passed by the House, it would not take much time for it to be passed into law considering the menace of the use of siren in the country.

He said all that the bill sought to streamline was the indiscriminate use of siren in the country which had resulted to road accidents and loss of lives and property.

The bill recommends a fine of N50,000 for anyone who contravenes its provisions in any part of the country and also empowers the FRSC to arrest defaulters.

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Maritime

Union Urges NIMASA, RSG To Dredge PH/Bonny Jetty

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The Bonny Maritime Transport Association (BMTA) has called on the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Rivers State Government to dredge the Port Harcourt/Bonny Jetty to enhance marine operations.
The union said the low shore of the river hampers its operations and grounds boats.
The Marine Safety Officer, BMTA, Comrade Kings Don, who made the call, said the low shore of the jetty was not helpful to marine operations.
According to him, drivers and passengers find it difficult to ply the route whenever the tide is low, thus wasting man hours.
“Sometimes, we push the boat to a level it would afloat due to low tide suffered in the jetty. We are appealing to NIMASA and the state government to assist and dredge the jetty for more efficiency”, he pleaded. 
Don described the Port Harcourt/Bonny Jetty as the gateway to Bonny Island and other riverine communities, and called on NIMASA and the state government to intervene and make the marine sector viable in the area. 
He said that the prompt dredging of the jetty would enhance water transportation in the state and improve its revenue generation.
He, however, commended the security agents, especially the Nigerian Navy and the marine police, for rescuing the waterways and creeks from all forms of criminality.
Comrade Don appealed to the security agents to engage in 24-hour patrol of the routes and other channels to save lives and property.

By: Chinedu Wosu

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Maritime

Boat Mishaps: Ship Owner Blames Absence Of Safety Regulations

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A renowned ship owner in the country, Alhaji Aminu Umar, has decried lack of standardisation and enforcement of safety measures on the nation’s inland waterways by the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA).
He also blamed lack of will to enforce regulations, safety, standard and regulations on overloading, night voyage, rickety and old craft as causes of mishap on the inland waterways.
Alhaji Umar, who is a former president, Nigerian Shipowners Association (NISA), said in Minna, Niger State, recently that enforcement of safety and standard on the nation’s inland waterways was weak.
Reacting to incessant boat mishaps in the country, Umar said, “there is no standard applied on movement of people, as all kinds of boat are being used. It is important that we standardise, because lack of safety and standard will increase accident.
“I think, the task of NIWA is to standardise conditions and procedures on the nation’s waterways”.
He also called for the regulation of movement of badges and passenger boats across the port environment.
“It’s a huge risk allowing badges moving containers around the port area side by side with boats carrying passengers.
“Moving people and containers at the same time is a huge risk, and a safety concern.
“NIWA and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) should see to this and tackle the menace”, he said.

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Maritime

Another Two Ships Arrive Onne Port, Today

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The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) says two ships laden with cargoes will arrive Onne Port in Rivers State today.
This was contained in its weekly Shipping Position made available to newsmen in Port Harcourt.
The shipping position gave the names of the vessels as UAL Bodewes and SI Osiris, scheduled to berth at the port.
The statement also gave the names of the shipping agents as Interservice Nig Limited and Alraine Shipping.
The ships, according to the statement, were laden with oil well tools/containers and general cargoes.
The ships are expected to berth at the Brawal Federal Light Terminal (FLT) Berth 1B and Brawal FLT Berth 1A in Rivers State. 
The length of the vessels was, however, not indicated in the shipping position.

By: Chinedu Wosu

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