Academia Has Major Roles To Play In Nigeria Blue Economy Project – Jamoh, DG, NIMASA

By Stephen Ubanna

 Between 221 and now, Bashir Jamoh, OFR, Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, who had survived President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Shake up of the Management Team of the nation’s maritime agencies, has taken maritime studies to Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria to complement the efforts of the Nigerian Maritime University, Okerenkoko, Delta state, in churning out manpower for the nation’s maritime sector.

The NIMASA, Chief Executive Officer, CEO, may have made a bold statement that the agency is out to pursue its capacity development agenda to its logical conclusion by sponsoring maritime studies in Nigeria to create a pull of Labour in the nation’s maritime sector as obtained in the Asian country of Singapore. The award of the multi-million naira contract for the Construction of the Institute of Maritime studies, IMS, building at the University of Lagos in 2022 speaks volume.

Jamoh, DG, NIMASA, presents a souvenir to Prf. Igunsola, VC, UNILAG, During a visit

The agency huge investment in the  UNILAG, IMS project, may have informed why Olasade Ogunsola, a Professor and Vice Chancellor of the University had repeatedly said  that the institution would assist the nation’s foremost maritime regulatory agency ‘’in sustaining standards set internationally by changing the narrative of maritime education in Nigeria. Prof. Ogunsola, the UNILAG, Vice Chancellor, had said that ‘’ the University partnership with NIMASA, under the Leadership of Jamoh, will make the IMS’’ to serve as a converging point for all actors in the nation’s maritime industry’’.

The NIMASA CEO, who had received Prof. Ogunsola Management team of UNILAG, recently in his Apapa, office, recently  may have spoken prophetically   when he stated  that ‘’in the  next four to five years , the agency and  UNILAG,  should be able  to boast and sponsor  important research  milestones  achieved  by IMS that would lead ‘’to recommendations and action plans  geared towards  development of the Nigeria’s Blue Economy ‘’.

Jamoh, DG, NIMASA, Prof. Ogunsola, VC, UNILAG, Prof. Chukwu&Mrs. Odusanya, Director Audit in a group pix

Given that maritime is global by nature may have informed why he had said that the Institute should also serve as an international focus with students from other African countries welcome in order to broaden the scope of learning and thereby repositioning Nigeria as the hub for African maritime education.

Appealing to Prof. Ogunsola led UNILAG Management  Team  ‘’to develop  and implement a five  year action plan’’ that would make the  IMS, in  the University an epicenter of research  for the repositioning  of the nation’s blue economy, Jamoh stated that ‘’it is the only way the sector  will become one of  the leading  contributory  sectors in the country  revenue generation, noting that Nigeria is endowed  with enormous  vast maritime  potentials.

Jamoh, who has been described   in maritime circles  as the champion of the Blue economy   project in Nigeria  had told those that cares to listen including policy makers at both at official and unofficial levels  that  the blue economy if properly developed in the country ‘’ has the potential  to generate  significant foreign exchange  because of  the country’s  long coastline  and abundant marine resources , including fisheries, acquaculture, tourism and renewable energy’’.

   Many believe that the Kaduna state born , NIMASA CEO, may have taken  Maritime studies to UNILAG and other tertiary institutions across the country because his technical  knowledge and understanding  that the academia hasA major role to play  in the development  of the Blue Economy project  which is estimated BY  maritime experts to be worth over  one trillion  of the North American country of the United States, US, dollars.

Determined to make the nation’s maritime sector one of the main stay of the nation’s economy in the future due to the down turn in the crude oil price in the international oil market may have informed why the present Management Team of NIMASA, had budgeted to build six maritime institutes in the six geographical zones in the country, comprising of north central, north eastern, north western, south east, south-south and south western.  The agency may started the IMS building projects with that of the UNILAG, in south western Nigeria, in 2022.

Oyetola: minister of Marine & Blue Economy

Adegboyega Oyetola, a former governor of Osun state and now minister of the newly created ministry of Marine and Blue Economy, may have gladdened the heart of Nigerians when he disclosed that the country has an estimated annual market share of $296 billion in fishries and other variables like hydro power, offshore oil and gas activities, among others, awaiting to be exploited.

This may have informed why the minister has defended a N10.9 billion  2024 budget  for the ministry  before  the joint sitting  of the Senate Committee  on Marine Transport  and the House Committees on Port and Harbour; Maritime Safety, Education  and Administration ; Inland Waterways  and Shipping services, in order to build and modernize the country’s port infrastructure.

 He was emphatic that the ministry will place primacy on the rehabilitation of the Lagos ports of Apapa and the Rivers port in PortHarcourt, Capital of Rivers state, which are dilapidated and believed to have reached its end of life, including the Tincan Island port, also sited in Lagos, the nation’s Commercial nerve centre, which are central to the realization of the Blue Economy project.

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