Engineering body wants holistic review of Nigeria’s human capacity development

Engr. Olayinka Okunade, Vice-President of AMES, welcoming The Transportation Minister, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, with them are Engr. Charles Uwadia, President of AMES and Engr. Emmanuel Ilori

R-L: Transportation Minister, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, AMES President, Engr. Charles Uwadia, and Engr. Emmanuel Ilori at the Maritime Technical Summit by AMES in LAgos
Photos by Israel

The Association of Marine Engineers and Surveyors (AMES) on Thursday harped on the need to have a holistic review of Nigeria’s human capacity development.
President of AMES, Engr. Charles Uwadia, said the present failure in the nation’s maritime sector  could be blamed on the lack of in-depth technical input in maritime policies and their implementation, in line with international best practices and realities.
Welcoming stakeholders and participants to the AMES Maritime Technical Summit at the Sheraton Hotel, Lagos,  Uwadia also noted that the declining standard in quality and profitability of ships of Nigerian flag can also be traced to poor technical standards occasioned by ship owners’ reluctance to comply with national and international standards and regulations.
“There is a need for a holistic review of the Nigerian Maritime human capacity development”,  Uwadia indicated, stressing that the Government, the institutional platforms and the stakeholders must collaborate, and synergize to enable Nigeria strategically move its maritime industry forward.
Building on a strong foundation laid by Uwadia, as an attentive audience which included the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi,  former Ekiti Governor,  Otunba Niyi Adebayo, former Ogun State Governor,  Chief Segun Osoba, the founder, Indigenous Ship-owners Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Chief Isaac Jolapamo, Senator Olorunimbe Mamowora,  Barrister Kola Adefemi and the Chairman, Ship Owners Association of Nigeria (SOAN),  Greg Ogbeifun; a Resource person,  Engr. Emmanuel Ilori admonished the audience to refocus, positing that Nigeria by now, based on established tonnage, should be on category ‘B’; even as he grieved that the country was yet to master it’s status on Category ‘C’.
“We should be on the Category B of the International Maritime Organization (IMO)  Council. Nigeria should be able to dominate the African – Atlantic waters”, highlighted Ilori,  a Lloyds Ambassador, pointing out that when we however short-changed on professionalism, we also discounted, heavily on our ability to compete,  and emphasized the need for going back to drawing board and working for further improvement.
In his contribution,  former  Rector, Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron,  Engr. Olu Akinsoji stressed the need for the development of a Human /Technical capacity development plan, observing that such would enable stakeholders know where we are, while everyone continues to work towards the next level, in case there was a change of batons at any point.
Akinsoji, in total agreement with the earlier position of Rotimi Amaechi that the rush for the creation of the Maritime University, Okerenkoko, was ill-timed, more so since it was to utter neglect of the MAN,  Oron.

He campaigned for stronger political understanding and will, observing that Nigeria has laudably good laws, calling attention to the fact that if human capacity was developed, its multiplier effects would directly impact, on both the maritime industry, the people and the economy at large.