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Nigeria Needs Holistic Approach To Manpower Development In Maritime – Master Mariner

President NAMM, Capt. Saib Olopoenia
Manpower
development for the Nigerian maritime industry requires a holistic approach,
the President of the Nigerian Association of Master Mariners (NAMM), Capt. Saib
Olopoenia has said.
Olopoenia made
the statement at an end-of-year dinner on Saturday at the Rockview Hotel in
Apapa, Lagos.

The occasion was
organised by the NAMM.
The master
mariner noted that, in spite of interventions by the Nigerian Maritime
Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and some private efforts, training of
seafarers still needed an improved structure.
“For the
seafarers’ training, interventions here and there by NIMASA and the private
sector are not holistic enough. We need to look at it from the total package.
“We have
submitted a document to the ministry of transport and copied NIMASA, NPA,
Shippers’ Council and NIWA, so that we can look at it holistically, rather than
taking it in piecemeal,” he said.
According to him,
acquiring a training vessel for the purpose of training seafarers will not be
the best approach even though it is a welcome idea.
He said that the
option for adequate training would be to have the cadets trained on board
trading vessels to expose them adequately.
“The training of
seafarers goes beyond just having a training vessel, because there are
limitations to the kind of training that can be done on training vessels.
“The best
training you can get is to get training on a ship that is actually doing
trading worldwide and calling at ports, where you can be introduced to the
rudiments of seamanship
“However, getting
a training vessel now will be a good start so that the cadets that are roaming
around now will have the basic training,” Olopoenia said.
He said that the
document submitted by the master mariners to the ministry of transport advised
consideration based on the number of needed maritime colleges.
According to him,
for the purpose of meaningful development, it is useful to know the number of
cadets who need training yearly so that adequate planning can be made for that
purpose.
The NAMM
president also noted that inadequacy of ship repair facilities had caused some
vessels operating on Nigerian waters to go to neighbouring countries for
dry-docking.
On the perennial
gridlock in Apapa, he said that it had led to economic losses to port users.
“The Apapa traffic
gridlock continues to pose severe drawbacks to business activities within Apapa
metropolis.
“Vehicular
movements grind to a halt, and road users are put through unnecessary trauma
trying to get to their destinations.
“The economic
losses to port users include ship delays,” he said.

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