On Sunday, May 21, 2023, the Nigerian Federal Government commissioned 14 enforcement and security boats belonging to the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency. These facilities were part of the $195m deep blue projects aimed at enhancing the nation’s maritime security and capacity in line with the best global practices.
Speaking during the commissioning at Kirikiri, Lagos, the Minister of Transportation, Muazu Sambo, said the completed projects were part of the government’s commitment to good governance and institutionalised policies for improved maritime safety and security.
Other projects commissioned by the minister include five fully bulletproof patrol/security boats, five refurbished search and rescue/pollution control boats, four 35-seater staff ferries, a search and rescue clinic and an administrative building.
“These projects will enable the country to achieve and sustain safe and secure shipping, cleaner oceans and enhanced maritime capacity. The search and rescue clinics will enable the agency to fulfill its obligations to seafarers and the general public by providing top-notch medical care facilities,” Sambo said.
The Director General, NIMASA, Dr Bashir Jamoh, said the inclusion of the security/patrol to the deep blue project assets will help improve security on the waterways, especially considering the recent proliferation of oil theft.
“The successful reduction of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea can be credited to the tremendous effort of the Federal Government in terms of provision of infrastructures, through the deep blue project, investment towards vessels, maritime domain awareness platforms, as well as land, air and sea assets. Beyond the strides at overcoming maritime crime at the Gulf of Guinea, the management and safety of the nation’s inland waterways equally deserve attention,” Jamoh said. He stated that NIMASA is committed to ensuring the waterways are safe for local transportation and other leisure activities, so that more internal revenues are generated.
“It is important to keep the inland waterways free of waste and pollutants so as to ensure they remain navigable in addition to keeping them secured from perpetrators of maritime crime.
“Notwithstanding the foregoing giant strides and the current state of security, the golden rule is that one must be persistent to remain successful. It is within the bearing of this frame of mind that we hinge the significance of today’s launching.
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