The Nigerian Ship Owners Association (NISA) has commended the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency’s (NIMASA’s) bid to ensure full implementation of the Cabotage Act, 2003 through the New Cabotage Compliance Strategy (NCCS).
Lagos State Coordinator, Captain Taiwo Akinpelumi stated that the association is pleased with NIMASA’ effort aimed at full realization of the Cabotage regime.
According to him, “Ship owners are the essence of NIMASA, without ship owners there will be no NIMASA and without NIMASA, there will be no ship owners. So, we have a reason to interact even a lot more than we are doing and that is why we are here.”
He stated that the body would always work together with the Agency, adding that,.“NIMASA is there for us and we are there for NIMASA. We are the two wings of the bird because no bird can fly with only one wing.”
He also stated that NISA, as a body, shares in the vision of the regulatory body to reposition the maritime sector for greater efficiency and productivity, hence the call for continuous partnership so that as professionals , they can bring to the table their professional expertise in assisting NIMASA to realise its full mandate.
In his response, the Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside extolled the role of ship owners to the maritime sector, describing them as key players to the sustenance and survival of the Nigerian maritime sector.
He further described the NISA delegation as a set of knowledgeable experts whose wealth of experience will be needed in helping the Agency realize its mandates as regards Cabotage implementation as enshrined in the NIMASA Act.
Accordingly, the DG stated that the Agency would give the necessary support to the association and would continue to engage in fruitful collaborative meetings, geared towards realizing a virile maritime industry.
He also assured the body that aside from Cabotage, the Agency would also look at areas of having exclusivity for Nigerian ship owners such as lighterage and that the Agency is poised to put mechanisms in place to ensure that it works.
“We will look at the MoU we had with NISA many years ago and review it and look at the possibility of revisiting it. We are pushing it back to you as a task and we believe that you will come with very useful suggestions on the way forward”, the DG said.