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Navy Recruits 1,176 To Fight Sea Pirates

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The Nigerian Navy has recruited 1,176 young men and women to aid the fight against sea pirates and oil bunkers in the nation’s maritime domain.
The Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Olonisakin, stated this in a statement made available to The Tide shortly after the passing out parade of Batch 28, Basic Training School in Onne.
He said the trainees underwent rigorous physical and mental training for seven months to prepare them for internal security operations across the country.
“The trainees have been adequately groomed in basic naval seamanship subjects, including swimming and weapon handling.
“Additionally, they have imbibed basic skills, like self-discipline, teamwork, and overcoming of problems.
“The trainees were also tutored on basic civil-military relations, inter-agency cooperation and laws of armed conflict. They have been transformed and ready for deployment,” he said.
Olonisakin said the Nigerian Navy, under its current leadership, had provided enabling environment as well as requisite logistic requirements to enhance the standard of training.
He said the trainees are joining the Navy at a time the armed forces were involved in many complex and challenging internal security operations across the country.
“At the present, the armed forces are engaged in insurgency and terrorism operations in the North East and North West; oil theft, illegal bunkering, pipeline vandalism, illegal refining and armed robbery in the South-South and piracy in the Gulf of Guinea.
“Over the past decade, the increase in the activities of non-state actors have continued to challenge the ability of our Armed Forces to overcome asymmetric security challenges.
“This informed the holistic review of training the trainees underwent to confront the contemporary security challenges. However, some of the trainees would be deployed in future to curb these security challenges,” he said.
The defence chief said the nation’s economy was largely dependent on resources and trading activities on the waterways, and as such, urged the Navy to open and secure the sea.
He said: “securing the nation’s economic lifeline would require superior tactics, unalloyed dedication, absolute discipline, virtuous leadership, well-maintained machinery, and constant world-class training”, adding the need for the loyalty of trainees to President Muhammadu Buhari as well as to the Armed Forces.

 

Chinedu Wosu

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Maritime

NPA Frowns Against Extortion Of Truck Drivers

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The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has threatened to sanction any staff that indulges in extortion of money from truck drivers at Apapa Port. 
The Acting Managing Director, NPA, Muhammed Bello-Koko, disclosed this shortly after a meeting with Governor Babatunde Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State.
Koko expressed optimism that the agency’s collaboration with the state government would bring an end to the perennial gridlock within and around the Apapa area.
The NPA boss emphasised the need to strengthen enforcement of traffic laws along the roads leading to Apapa and Tin Can ports, which are the two busiest ports in the country. 
He said NPA had been inundated with complaints of extortion from truckers, especially by security operatives, demanding money from drivers before accessing the ports.
 He described the practice as a major disincentive to the smooth implementation of the truck call-up system.
“One of the complaints of the truckers has to do with extortion by security operatives, the Army, the Police, the Nigerian Navy and even NPA security staff.
“This is one of the areas we require the intervention of government, because we have police officers deployed from the State Command who are allegedly involved in this. We at the NPA have resolved to take the right punitive measures against any of our staff involved in this.
“We have moved some of them out of port locations, and we will do further reviews. Whoever is found involved would be appropriately sanctioned”, he said. 
The NPA boss acknowledged that the Lagos State Government had been a close partner in terms of enforcement, but asked for more intervention to end the menace. 
“NPA has reached out to the Federal Ministry of Works, we have been speaking with the Director of Works in the State, and we have asked that they should provide some palliatives around Sunrise Bus-stop.
“We were made to understand that the contract for that section of the road has just been awarded, but because of the rains, work has been delayed”, he added.

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MWUN Tasks NIMASA, NIWA On Boat Drivers’ Training

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The Maritime and Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has called on the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) to train and retrain boat drivers in the country to reduce incessant accidents on our waterways.
MWUN said training and retraining of boat drivers would enhance their capability and efficiency in the industry and save lives.
Chairman, MWUN, Rivers State Chapter, Comrade Jonah Jumbo disclosed this during a telephone interview with The Tide.
Comrade Jumbo also advised NIMASA and NIWA to sanction any boat driver involved in over-speeding, overloading and reckless driving to reduce boat mishaps.
The chairman who regretted that most boat drivers lacked the skills and technical know-how to navigate the waters, said their human errors often caused accidents.
Comrade Jumbo insisted that regular training for boat drivers would enrich their skills and enable them to read the tide while on transit.
He frowned at the increasing rate of boat mishaps on the nation’s waterways and urged all stakeholders to check the trend. 
The MWUN boss called on the Nigerian Navy and the Marine Police to arrest and prosecute any driver indulging in alcohol and overloading of passengers while on transit, adding that the act caused over seventy percent of water accident.
He appealed to drivers to desist from acts capable of causing accident, noting that many families have lost their loved ones through reckless driving and unholy acts caused by human errors on the waterways.

By: Chinedu Wosu

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Maritime

Sokoto To Boost Water Transport With Motorised Boats

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The Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, says his administration will boost water transportation with motorised boats.
He also said his government would make life jackets available to all travellers and other water users to reduce boat mishap.
The governor stated this while commiserating with the people of Shagari Local Government Area that recently lost their loved ones in a boat mishap in the state. 
He regretted that the state had lost many lives to boat accidents and prayed God to grant the deceased eternal rest and their families the fortitude to bear their loss.
Also speaking, Chairman, Shagari Local Government Council, Aliyu Dantine Shagari, said eight of the victims were married women while five were children and elderly men.
He attributed the cause of the boat mishap to overloading.
“But there are other causes of boat mishap including strong wind. We are still investigating the matter to know what actually led to the accident”, he said. 
The chairman advised boat drivers to desist from overloading and over speeding, noting that the community lost over six people in a similar accident last year.

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