Chinazor Megbolu |
The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has assured of quick response towards rescuing the 19 kidnapped Crew members off Bonny Island, Nigeria.
The maritime regulator stated that the agency was ready use the maritime security architectural machinery at its disposal to achieve the rescuing mission.
The Director General, NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside explained that the Agency was not resting on its oars hence partnering with other relevant stakeholders to ensure the crew onboard are secured and safe.
Speaking at the just concluded National Transportation Summit organised by the Chartered Institute of Transport Administration of Nigeria (CIoTA), Dakuku pointed out that the tanker was attacked off the coast of Bonny with 19 persons alleged to have been kidnapped leaving 9 crew members onboard the vessel.
According to him, “the operators of the vessel made contact with NIMASA and the Nigerian Navy and we immediately went to work”.
He maintained the vessel owners had operated for 10 days, within the nation’s territorial waters yet didn’t register contact with the Harbour Masters as well as registering contact with the Nigeria authorities.
“However, that isn’t an issue because life is more precious than any other consideration. We have also immediately contacted the naval unit around that area and they have gone to work. The Navy has established contact with the remaining crew members onboard the vessel and the nine persons onboard the vessel are safe and the vessel is safe, ”he said.
Dakuku regretted that the incident took place at a period efforts are being arranged to make the Nigerian waterways safe.
“I think this would ultimately serve as catalyst for us to fast-track what we are doing to safeguard our waterways so that commerce can thrive again and people can do economic activities without fear or hindrance, “Dakuku said.
The NIMASA chief executive in his solidarity with the victims and members of their families for the ordeal in the hands of the kidnappers, charged every concerned citizen and all stakeholders to rally round the agency towards curbing the menace and make the nation’s territorial waters secured and free for navigation.
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