Maritime: Deputy Governor Tasks Navy On Ship Building


The Bayelsa State Deputy Governor, Rear Adm. John Jonah (rtd.) yesterday tasked the Nigerian Navy on ship building, saying that it would boost the nation’s capacity in the maritime trade.
The retired admiral, in a statement issued by Lt.-Com. Charles Brinemigha, said that the Navy could boost the nation’s capacity in the maritime trade by championing the development of its own war ships.
The Deputy Governor, who was the Special Guest of Honour at a sailing competition organised by the Nigerian Navy Sailing Club, Ojo, Lagos, said there was need for the Navy to begin to design and construct its own vessels.
This, according to him, will also create jobs and arrest capital flight.
Adm. Jonah was the head of a team of naval engineers who built the nation’s first warship known as NNS ANDONI.
The war ship is now participating actively in the war against arms and drug smuggling, illegal fishing and human trafficking in the country’s territorial waters.
The Deputy Governor noted that millions of dollars were spent annually to procure vessels abroad, but that locally-produced ones would meet the immediate needs of the nation.
According to him, Nigeria is basically a maritime country and that there are so much activities in the maritime area which account for the growing need for platforms to meet up with the demand.
He said: “One thing that is in favour of Nigeria is genuine engineers who are willing to embark on such projects.
“The Cabotage law also creates opportunities for the Navy to produce crafts at certain level, which can be easily manufactured locally.
“I believe we can do more than what we are doing now if we put our minds at it.
“If we produce here, we will employ our people and it will be so enormous,’’ he said.