About 90 per cent of world trade is transported through the sea whereas the efficiency and effectiveness of the Nigerian economy depends largely on the maritime sector.
Governor of Delta State, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, stated this in Warri, Delta State, during the 2018 Day of the Seafarers with the theme, “Seafarers’ Wellbeing” organised by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA). The governor who was represented by the Deputy Governor of the state, Kingsley Otuaro, further applauded the initiative of the establishment of the Nigerian Maritime University (NMU), which is the first specialised university in Africa. He expressed the readiness of the state to partner the agency in actualising the vision behind the establishment of the institution.
“As a state, we are prepared to support and partner NIMASA and the Federal Government to ensure the underlying motive of establishing the Maritime University is realised. We are also certain that the university will be a source of training more seafarers and it’s capable of adding commercial value to the Nigerian economy,” the governor said.
Earlier, the Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, had noted that Nigerian seafarers rank among the best in the world and can favourably compete with their foreign counterparts.
Accordingly, the DG said this is why the agency in the past few years embarked on the training and retraining of Nigerian seafarers and cadets in specialised maritime courses both locally and internationally, which is aimed at enhancing their competences and employability.
Peterside, who reiterated the agency’s commitment in ensuring a better living condition for the seafarers in line with the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO)’s Descent Work Agenda, gave the assurance that the agency will continue to make issues concerning the seafarers a priority.