“Be worthy ambassadors,” Amaechi urges 235 graduating cadets of Maritime Academy of Nigeria
…As Goje highlights need for increased seafaring manpower development
The Honourable Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, on Monday urged the graduating 235 cadets of the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron, Akaw Ibom, on being good ambassadors of the Academy, as they face a new phase in their seafaring career.
Addressing the gathering and specifically the graduating cadets during the Passing out Parade (PoP), Amaechi said it was gratifying to see that they have adjudged worthy both in character and learning to be awarded their respective certificates, thus putting on them a greater responsibility to showcase the value that has been bestowed on them.
Represented by Mr. Eno Richard Egbe, a Deputy Director in the Ministry of Transportation, the Minister said: “To the graduating cadets, it is gratifying to note that you have been adjudged suitable both in character and learning, for the award of Higher National Diploma and National Diploma certificates respectively, which you have just received.
“I therefore urge you to see yourselves as ambassadors of the Academy in whatever capacity you find yourselves in the future. I specially congratulate the graduates and the entire management and staff of the Academy.”
Amaechi commended the Rector of the Academy, Commodore Emmanuel Effedua (Rtd.), the Academy’s Management team as well as the Interim Management Committee for re-engineering the Academy to what it has become today.
The Minister also appreciated the cordial relationship between the academy and the host community, and encouraged its sustainability for a peaceful learning environment.
Also speaking, Danjuma Goje, the Chairman Senate Committee on Maritime Transport, who was represented by Senator Akon Eyakenyi, extolled the efforts of the management of the Academy for the event which was coming two years after the inaugural passing out parade held in 2018.
He highlighted the need for increased seafarer training, to get more seafarers for industry manpower needs, seeing that Nigeria is a maritime nation and involved in huge importation and exportation.
The chairman said: “I salute the graduating cadets on their passing out parade today. The Nigerian Senate congratulates the Academy on this epoch making event. Maritime administration and learning is critical to the economy of Nigeria because as an import dependent nation, over 90 percent of our trade, both import and export, is through the sea.
“Maritime trade is undertaking by professionals (seafarers) who must undergo prescribed courses of training inline with standards set by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).
“The Maritime Academy was therefore established in 1977 to ensure Nigeria benefits from maritime trading through production of maritime professionals. Over the past few years, the Maritime Academy has been living the Nigerian dream.
“However, despite the Academy’s effort at producing seafarers, Nigeria still has a huge deficit gap in terms of seafaring manpower. Therefore, there is the need to ensure greater numbers of well trained professionals are churned out as seafarers in the country without compromising quality and standards.”
On his part, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas, represented by the Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command of the Nigerian Navy, Rear Admiral D.A. Adeniran, revealed that the Navy would be increasing it’s collaboration with the Academy in the coming months.
In his presentation, the Rector of the Academy, Duja Effedua urged the graduating cadets to brace up for the challenges ahead as life demands greater efforts to hit set goals and record achievements.
Effedua said: “In life, nothing comes easy. You will see challenges as you go out there, face them and keep trying until you overcome the challenge.
“When I was appointed as Rector, I was scared because the rot I saw on campus was challenging. However, I was lucky that I was co-opted into the IMC, and later the Governing Council came on board, and together, we have been able to overcome.
“Today, all our classes are smart teaching classes. All our students have their own personal laptops. We have Master Mariners in our ranks as lecturers, including foreign Master Mariners and our simulator is the latest in the sub-region. We did all this just because we blocked all revenue leakages, we didn’t get money from outside.”
Highlight of the event was the offer of automatic employment by Starzs Investment Group to the Best Overall Graduating Student, Anthony Oluwaseun Adigun of the School of Marine Engineering.