Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN) is set to approach the National Assembly over the poor salaries of its workforce.
This is even as the Academy revealed that 60 cadets are already onboard vessels doing their mandatory sea-time training.
Addressing maritime journalists in Oron, Akwa Ibom State recently, the Rector of MAN, Commodore Duja Effedua (rtd) revealed that when he took over as Rector in September of 2017, he inherited an over-bloated cadet strength; very low standard of training; a demoralised academic staff; huge debt profile and many abandoned projects.
According to Commodore Duja Effedua (rtd), “On salaries, we will soon be approaching the National Assembly over the salaries of our staff because they are poorly paid.
The Minister of Transportation has intervened and asked that we increase their allowances, which we will soon be concluding. If we don’t pay very well, many of them will be poached by other maritime institutions, so we need to retain our well trained academic staff.
“We also used to have a challenge in the area of adequate lecturers, but today, I can boast to the world that there is no maritime institution that has better lecturers than we do at the Academy. Recently, a proprietor of one of the leading maritime institutions had a chat with me on phone, and I asked him, how many Master Mariners do you have? He replied that he has one, and I told him that the Academy has six Master Mariners.
“I asked him again, how many Marine Engineers do you have? He said one, but we have more than 13 Marine Engineers at the Academy. I also asked him, how many lecturers do you have in the School of Maritime Transport? He said his Maritime Transport lecturers used to come and go on a contract basis, but I told him that the Academy has six professionals in the Maritime Transport section, and that is in addition to the existing ones.
“Among my lecturers in the School of Maritime Transport, I have three authors who have written books.
“I asked again, how many of your cadets are onboard vessels for sea-time training, he said none, but I currently have about 60 cadets onboard vessels doing sea-time training courtesy of our relationship with the Ship Owners Association of Nigeria (SOAN).