The Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Bashir Jamoh, has lamented the lack of a national shipping line, saying Nigeria mismanaged 29 ocean going vessels in 20 years.
Speaking at the launch of the NIMASA Knowledge Centre Library in Kirikiri over the weekend, Jamoh said former President Olusegun Obasanjo, left government with 29 vessels when he was Head of State but returned in 1999 to find none left.
The NIMASA DG who was delighted at the library launch explained that it would help to develop the maritime industry and trace Nigeria’s historical epoch.
He said, “Some of us are alive and know the history of the Nigerian National Shipping Line. Today, we don’t have what we called Nigerian Shipping Line.
His word, “Former President Olusegun Obasanjo mentioned several times that he left government with over 29 vessels but by the time he returned for second term, there was no single one.
“It is our hope to trace history on the number of those ships and how they looked like and how we can model them and keep them.”
According to the NIMASA boss, the structure was expected to have a guest room for lodging purposes, a workshop, a museum, a helipad and a resource centre.
“We want to link the library to the International Maritime Organisation. Our hope is that this will serve as the centre in Africa. We have a Regional Search and Rescue Centre which will house nine countries of the West and Central Africa. The essence is to develop the maritime industry.
“We have 44 apartment buildings. We want to accommodate lecturers and there is a learning center and administrative block. The remaining 40 apartments are for students. This model will serve as a model that if you want to venture into maritime, you will come here and learn all about the profession.”
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