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NIMASA Vows To Eliminate Maritime Crimes

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The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, (NIMASA), has vowed to eliminate all forms of maritime crimes from the nation’s territorial waters.
Director General, NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, made the promise while receiving a special mission aircraft at the Nigerian Air Force Base, Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, recently.
Accompanied by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, Jamoh said the new aircraft would further improve security in Nigerian waters.
A special mission aircraft was received in Lagos last Wednesday, in the final phase of the delivery and installation of assets under the deep blue project designed to secure Nigerian waters up to the Gulf of Guinea.
The NIMASA boss said the deployment of the deep blue project assets would reduce the rate of attacks in the country’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), explaining that the goal is to eliminate maritime crimes.
“There has been a drastic decrease in the rate of security breaches in our waters in recent times. This is a clear indication that we are getting it right with the deep blue project”
“We ultimately aim to completely eradicate security hindrances to shipping and business generally in the Nigerian maritime domain”, he said.
He explained further that the integrated national security and waterways protection infrastructure, also known as the deep blue project, was designed with three categories of platforms to tackle maritime security issues on land, sea and air.
The land assets, according to Jamoh, comprise the command, control, communication, computer, and Intelligence Centre (C4i) for intelligence gathering and data collection; 16 armoured vehicles for coastal patrol, and about 600 specially trained troops for interdiction, known as maritime security unit.
The air assets include two special mission aircrafts for surveillance of the EEZ, one of which was received last Wednesday, with the second one expected to arrive tomorrow, as well as three special mission helicopters for search and rescue; and four unmanned aerial vehicles.
The statement added that Jamoh had earlier inspected three special mission helicopters at the Naval Base, Apapa, under the project and is billed for launch on May 21.
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Customs Cautions Officers On Improper Dressing, Unkempt Beards

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The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has threatened to sanction its officials for improper dressing and unkempt beards.  Other minor violations include use of name tags.
This was contained in a memo issued by the Deputy Comptroller General, Human Resources Development of NCS, A.T. Babani.
The memo number HRD/2021/026 titled: “Introduction of Customs Police Caution Slip in the Service” was dated 10th September, 2021.
The memo stated that the caution slip would be issued in triplicate for minor offences such as improper dressing, use of unapproved name tags, and failure to shave among others.
The service said it has introduced the use of Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) as a law enforcement tool in the service.
The memo reads, “I am directed to bring to your notice that the Comptroller General of Customs has approved the usage of Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) as a law enforcement tool in the service.
“The slip which will be administered by the Customs Police Unit of various Zones/Area Commands would be in triplicate and once issued, a copy shall be forwarded and inserted into the officer’s establishment file.
“The issuance of the Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) will include offences such as improper dressing, multi-colour waist belt other than approved one and usage of unapproved name tag, failure to shave, and other sundry minor violations of the second regulation 13 of the Customs and Excise Management Act CAP LFN of 2004 as amended.
“The caution slips would serve as a proactive tool to ensure compliance to rules and regulations.
“First-time offenders, repeated offenders and consistent pattern of offence identified, shall be documented and used for strategic decisions making”.

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Stakeholder Tasks RSG, MWUN On Piracy

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The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Rivers State Branch, says the union and the state government need a strong synergy to tackle the act of sea piracy and all forms of criminal activities in the state’s waterways. 
Chairman, MWUN, Rivers state Branch, Comrade Jonah Jumbo, in an interview with The Tide, noted that unlike in Lagos State, there was no synergy between the Rivers State Government and MWUN to curb piracy on the waterways.
“We need to work together to checkmate all forms of criminality, sea piracy and attacks on passenger boats in our waters”, Jumbo said.
Comrade Jumbo insisted that the state government and the union were working in parallel lines, hence the high rate of piracy on the waterways.
Jumbo said, lack of synergy between the state and the union was having negative turns in its operations, thereby not improving marine transport business in the state.
The chairman said the union alone cannot solve the problem of insecurity in the waterways, hence the need for collaborations between the state government and other relevant authorities.
He further noted that Lagos State was doing well in marine transportation because there was a strong synergy between the state government and the union.
“Lagos state maritime business is improving every day with more fleets because the government, stakeholders and the union are working towards ensuring success”, he said.

By: Chinedu Wosu

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Inadequate Facilities At MAN Worry Mariners

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The Nigerian Association of Master Mariners (NAMM) has lamented lack of simulators for training of cadets at the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN) in Oron, Akwa Ibom State.
The body also decried lack of ocean-going vessels to enable the cadets of the academy acquire the mandatory sea time experience.
NAMM President, Capt. Tajudeen Alao disclosed this during an interview with newsmen, recently. 
“Training at the Academy had always been as per the International Maritime Organisations (IMO) model courses”, he said.
Capt. Alao said the shortcomings have always been in the areas of lecturers, simulators and international trading ships for practical exposure.
Other challenges include lack of funding, bureaucracy and the Nigerian factor.
“Leadership of the academy too has not been based on professionalism but political consideration. The shipping companies who are end-users have not committed their services to the academy.
“The number of students per class is much more than what is obtainable in the western world. 
“There are no core ship-related courses, not many courses, facilities and disciplines,” Alao said.

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