The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) on Friday called for stakeholders’ cooperation on security in the maritime sector.
Bashir Jamoh, the director-general of NIMASA, made the call at a one-day sensitisation workshop organised by the agency in collaboration with National Emergency Management Agency(NEMA) and State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) in Port Harcourt.
Mr Jamoh, who was represented by Ceche Osango, the director, special duties in maritime and safety, said the workshop was to create a platform for stakeholders in the maritime sector to interact and see how to support each other to provide solutions to security challenges faced in the industry.
“We believe that collaborating with all the stakeholders, whether military, paramilitary and community, will enhance our resources today and will come up with ideas in which we can continuously support each other and be able to deliver the results with our common goal, which is to provide security,” he said.
The director stated that piracy on the waterways was one of the challenges that Nigeria faced in the Gulf of Guinea, saying that insecurity affected merchant shipping and needed collaboration and solutions to fight against the challenges.
Similarly, Godwin Tepikor, the state coordinator for NEMA in Rivers, stated that the call for collaboration was apt as insecurity was becoming a perennial challenge in the country
Represented by Damian Egwu, one of the staff members in the state, Mr Tepiko said that the maritime sector in the country had faced insecurity as it grew over the years in the Gulf of Guinea, which had contributed to the economic sabotage.
He stated that this contributed to the downturn of GDP on oil production from two million to one million and two hundred thousand barrels due to insecurity.
He called on stakeholders in the state to join hands to fight insecurity, stating that the menace could not be handled by one singular agency or security outfit.
Other stakeholders present were representatives of the Nigerian Air Force, Nigeria Police, Civil Defence Corps, Nigeria Road Safety Corps and the Federal Fire Service.