Chinazor Megbolu |
Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Bashir Jamoh, has denied the agency granted waiver to foreign shipping firms bringing petroleum products into the country.
He made this disclosure while appearing before the Senate Committee on local content on Wednesday in Abuja.
He noted that under the Cabotage Act, the NIMASA can only process the waiver but does not have the power to grant it.
According to Jamoh; “the operation of the Cabotage Act provides that NIMASA has the responsibility under Section 5 (2) to 5 (4) to process waiver and not to grant waiver. NIMASA never grants waiver, but only processes waiver.
“As the Minister mentioned, if we process, we send it to the Ministry of Transportation for the Minister’s consideration and approval, and to the best of my knowledge, for over 15 years, no Minister has granted a waiver.
“In entire Africa, only Nigeria allows the trading of single-hull vessel. The President is aware of this and when I came in, I issued marine notice that by 31st of December, we will no longer certify a single hull vessel.
“This is because if you want to trade, nobody would accept that particular vessel. That is number one”.
The NIMASA Chief Executive maintained that only the Minister of Transportation could grant a waiver and none has done so in the past 15 years.
Meanwhile, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Local Content, Hon. Teslim Folarin, said: “We understand that they don’t have enough vessels; they don’t have capacity, but the capacity cannot come from heaven”
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