By Zika Bobby
The General Manager, Public Affairs Division of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Capt. Iheanacho Ebubeogu, has said the Federal Government spends about $1.8 million to remove shipwreck from Nigerian waters.
Speaking at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Nigerian Association of Master Mariners, (NAMM) in Lagos, Ebubeogu, a retired ship captain said it would be economical if vessels that are still afloat but no longer in use are towed before they sink and become wrecks.
“The unfortunate thing is that all the wrecks we have removed are worthless than the money we have spent in their removal and that is why it is advisable for these wrecks to be towed away from Nigeria, when they are derelicts, abandoned vessels, since they still have their buoyancy. With a good tugboat sailing for 28 days, you can tow more than 16 ships to Bangladesh. The cost of paying for that towing is less than one tenth of the cost of removing one wreck from the water. None of the wrecks removed from Nigerian waters is less than $1.8m,” he said.
A member of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Mr. Kayode Farinto, who represented the President, Olayiwola Shittu, called for legal action against owners of wrecks and added that such action would save government money.