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NIMASA’s REMARKABLE ACHIEVEMENTS: Nigeria’s Maritime Advancements Garner International Acclaim

ByHybridNewsNg

Aug 14, 2023

In a remarkable three-year span from 2020 to 2023, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has propelled the nation’s maritime sector into global prominence through the ratification of six crucial international conventions.

Spearheaded by the visionary leadership of Dr. Bashir Yusuf Jamoh, NIMASA has not only accelerated Nigeria’s journey toward a robust blue economy but has also set a high standard for maritime potential utilization to ensure economic sustainability and growth.

Under Jamoh’s strategic guidance, Nigeria has earned widespread recognition for its proactive efforts in the maritime domain. It’s imperative to underline that these accomplishments wouldn’t have been possible without the steadfast legal foundations provided by both domestic legislation and international conventions, to which Nigeria has committed itself. The country has conscientiously ratified six pivotal international maritime conventions, encompassing various facets such as training standards, certification protocols, pollution control, and passenger luggage carriage by sea.

The conventions ratified include the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships 2009, International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification, and Watch-keeping for Fishing Vessel Personnel (STCW-F) 1995, Protocol Relating to Intervention on the High Seas in Cases of Oil Pollution Casualties (Intervention Protocol) 1973, Protocol on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims (LLMC) 1996, Protocol to the 1974 Athens Convention relating to the Carriage of Passengers and their Luggage by Sea 2002, and Protocol of 2005 to the 1988 Protocol for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Fixed Platforms located on the Continental Shelf (SUA PROT 2005).

During this transformative triennial period, NIMASA has also successfully concluded the review of 49 regulations established under the Merchant Shipping Act, 2007. These regulations are tailored to safeguard the interests of indigenous maritime professionals and investors, offering them priority in various opportunities within the sector.

In tandem with its commitment to bridging operational gaps between maritime and other sectors, NIMASA has facilitated unprecedented interagency collaboration with federal government-owned bodies. The agency has inked Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with key entities such as the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT), and the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), signifying its dedication to holistic development.

Furthermore, NIMASA’s drive for global maritime excellence has led to groundbreaking MoUs with 16 countries, focusing on the recognition of Certificate of Competency (CoC) and the training of seafarers. This initiative aims to foster international employment opportunities for Nigerian CoC holders while contributing to the global challenge of seafarer shortage.

In the realm of certification, NIMASA’s innovative approach has automated the registration process for Shipping Company/Agents, ensuring greater integrity through QR code-embedded certificates, effectively eliminating the specter of counterfeit documentation.

NIMASA’s commitment to education extends to the legal sphere as well, with the agency successfully hosting the Annual Nigerian Admiralty Law Colloquium in collaboration with the Nigeria Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS) and the National Judicial Institute (NJI) for consecutive years. This initiative aims to enhance judicial officers’ capacity to handle admiralty cases effectively.

One of NIMASA’s most notable achievements is the instrumental role it played in the implementation of the Suppression of Piracy and Maritime Offences (SPOMO) Act, 2019. This landmark legislation has significantly bolstered security in trading routes across the Gulf of Guinea, leading to the successful prosecution of several piracy-related cases. The SPOMO Act has garnered global attention for its comprehensive legal framework and successful outcomes, inspiring maritime administrations worldwide to consider its model for tackling piracy.

Renowned figures in the global maritime community, including Kitack Lim, Secretary of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and Dr. Paul Adalikwu, Secretary General of the Maritime Organization of West and Central Africa (MOWCA), have applauded Nigeria’s SPOMO Act, recommending its adoption to other African nations.

In sum, NIMASA’s dynamic leadership, steered by Dr. Jamoh and his adept team, has transformed the agency into a beacon of progress, leveraging the power of the law to augment Nigeria’s maritime industry and contribute substantially to the nation’s economic prosperity.

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