Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) in collaboration with Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) and the Bayelsa State government are set to resuscitate the Railway Foundry for the benefit of the country.
This was revealed when the Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, in the company of the Managing Director of NRC, Fidet Okhiria, and senior executives of both organisations inspected the Nigerian Railway foundry located within the NRC complex in Ebute metta Lagos.
Jamoh stated that during his recent presentation to the Federal Executive Council to get approval to commence the removal of wrecks from the nation’s territorial waters, he was asked where such wrecks will be kept and what plans he has for the removed wrecks.
In his words, the NIMASA boss said, “if we remove wrecks holistically as we proposed, we need to make provision for where they will be kept and how we can recycle them for economic benefits. That’s why I spoke with the managing director of Nigerian Railway, and Bayelsa State Government which had earlier indicated interest in wreck recycling with technical partners from South Africa to come and invest in the Nigerian Railway foundry.”
Jamoh indicated that the foundry will create several jobs with spare parts for shipbuilding and ship repairs, thereby saving foreign exchange for the country.
He noted that not only wrecks will be recycled at the foundry but other damaged iron-based components and metals such as scrapped cars and machinery.
Meanwhile, Okhiria who expressed delight that his prayers are gradually been heard promised that NRC will support NIMASA.
He said “I am happy to receive NIMASA boss with open arms. We have the space; we have some little equipment we are no longer putting to use because of newer technologies. And now that NIMASA has indicated interest, we are ready to come together and collaborate.” Okhiria also noted that Nigeria will benefit from knowledge transfer especially for students of tertiary institutions doing their three months or six months industrial training, and it will also save the time it takes to bring in metal parts from abroad. “There are some of our locomotives that require parts from abroad that we need to wait for 7 months before we can get them.“ Ohhiria stated.