NIMMASA: We Cannot Achieve Our Manadate Without The Support Of The Navy -Jamoh

By Stephen Ubanna

Bashir Jamoh, Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency , NIMASA, says  the agency cannot achieve  its  statutory  responsibility of mainting Nigerian maritime domain  to rid it of piracy   and Criminal elements  without the support of the Nigerian Navy.

He is right. The first set  of 27 arrested  suspected pirates to be prosecuted under the country’s  anti-piracy Law signed by President  Muhammadu Buhari in June  1919 by the Maritime Regulatory agency were said to have been made by the Navy and handed over to the agency in the spirit of inter-agency relationship.

Jamoh, who could not hide his feelings  when Frederick Ogu, a Rear Admiral and Flag Officer, Coomanding, Naval Training Command,  paid him a courtesy call in his Apapa office  recently,  was emphatic: NIMASA was not an armed Organisation and could not achieve its mandate  without the support of the Nigerian Navy.

An appreciative NIMASA  Director General said the good working relationship between the agency and the Navy  predated  the Memorandum of Understanding , MoU, that gave birth to the establishment  of the Maritime Guard Command, manned by Naval Officers and domiciled in the agency.

This may have informed why the NIMASA boss revealed that ‘’plans  have  advanced stage  to harmonise the training procedures of NIMASA  and the Nay  for improved safety and security of the country’s maritime space’’.Jamoh, who had been privy to the agency’s budgetary allocation to training programme over the last four years, said  a large chunk of it went  into  the training of   its workforce.  

Giving an insider information to  the  training programme, he  disclosed that the agency has what  it call ‘’non-staff educational assistance’’, which is also geared towards  building capacity for thenations’s maritime sector.  This may have facilitated its investment in the  training Naval personnel whenever the opportunity  and the need arise. Insiders informed The Value News that scores of Naval  personnel  had benefited from the agency  training programmme over the last couple of years at  no cost to the  Nigeria Navy.

Jamoh Presenting A Gift To Rear AAdmiral Ogu

At present, the agency, it was gathered  is looking at the direction of  the  Naval facilities and how to harmonise  the training guidelines to meet the standards required by the International Maritime Organisation, IMO, under the close watch of Kitack Lim, for Certification.  That much was confirmed by the NIMASA Director General.

The multi-million dollar  Deep Blue Project , known in maritime circles  as the Integrated National and Waterways  Infrastructure, may have encouraged the NIMASA officials  to think  of harmonising its training programme with the NAAVY to Comprehensively  tackle   insecurity  on Nigeria waters  and the exclusive Economic Zone, up to the Gulf of Guinea.

He may have gladdened the Naval Chief when  he confirmed that  most of the Deep Blue Project assets  are already in the country.The Israeli security Company, handling the $195 million project  was said to have  supplied  two Special Mission vessels, 14 out of the 17 Fast intervention vessels,14  out of the 17 Special aarmoured vehicles among others. The NIMASA,  boss was said to have told the Flag Officer  that that the Special Mission vessels and aircraft  would be manned  and Commanded  by Officers of the Nigerian Navy.

He had pointed out that that had been  little delay in the deployment of the Special Mission vessels and aircraft  as the training component could  only be done outside  the shores of the country. He blamed the delay in the  training  programme  to the Wuhan Town in Hebei Province of the Asian country of China emerged coronavirus , popular COVID 19 which forestalled International Flight operations across the globe.

Ogu, who was appointed the Flag Officer of the Naval Training Command last June  by the Naval High Command  may have  realised the importance of the training programme  that he had stressed the need for NIMASA and the Navy’’ to work closely  together  in training and  other fronts’’.

He alluded to the fact that the Navy already have an existing MoU with NIMASA, which makes it easier for them to relate on  all  fronts.  He noted that the importance of agency  to Naval trainings  cannot  be ‘’overestimated’’ They are the ones  who issue Certificates   for our basic  mandatory  and survival at sea ’’, he had said. He corroborated Jamoh’s  views that there is need   for the two sister agencies ‘’to harmonise  their training  methods to further  enhance  their capacity’’.

The Flag Officer, disclosed that that  the Navy has training facilities  are available  to both Civilians and military personnel, urging Nigerians  who are willing to take up a career  in the maritime sector  to take advantage  of the  Naval facilities across the country to do so. 

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