NPA to Partner Navy on Security, Safety

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Eromosele Abiodun

The Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman has reaffirmed the commitment of NPA to improve on the existing synergy with the Nigerian Navy and other relevant stakeholders in the maritime sub sector particularly security of the nations’ waterways.

She stated this when she hosted the Flag Officer Commanding the Western Naval Command of the Nigerian Navy, Rear Admiral Ferguson Dukas Bobai who was in the company of senior officers on a working visit to the NPA Corporate Headquarters, Marina, Lagos.

She said securing the nations’ waterways would impact positively on revenue generation for the nation through effective monitoring of vessels vis-à-vis improved operational efficiency.
According to her, the NPA would ensure that the enhanced relationship with the Navy is sustained through information sharing.

Concerning the berthing space for the Navy ships anchored at their jetties and the on-going repairs therein, Hadiza informed the Naval team that the management of the NPA would work towards granting the Navy a temporary berthing space pending the rehabilitation of its facilities.

She charged the Naval Authorities to immediately reconvene the committee set up to facilitate the dredging at the Takwa Bay turning base and proceed with the implementation of the earlier recommendations and positions as agreed.

She promised that NPA management would make available financial support to the project via budgetary provision and allocation in the next fiscal year.
The NPA boss called for maximum use of the Command, Control, Communication and Intelligence (CCCI) of both organisations through the swift deployment of its personnel aimed at collaborating on information sharing towards operational security efficiency.

Earlier, Bobai had informed Usman of the need for a sustained synergy equally between the Navy and the NPA most especially in view of the sensitive role both organisation’s play in the life of the nation alongside other government agencies concerning security.

The Naval chief solicited for a space at the Takwa Bay for the swift response to security challenges from Naval personnel whilst on patrol of the Nigerian Waterways.

He affirmed that the position of the NPA in the life of the nation’s economy is essential and strategic through the swift and safe facilitation of import and export business on our Waterways.
Hence, all hands must be on deck at ensuring that the nation’s harbours are protected at all cost by the relevant agencies through the collaboration with the Navy in order to facilitate maximum revenue generation for the nation through shipping activities.

Bobai was of the opinion that the Navy was willing to improve on the partnership between relevant agencies such as the NPA and NIMASA in the area of information sharing and collaboration.
This, he said, would be through the monitoring of ships on the nation’s Waterways before being allowed to anchor on the Nigerian Waters.

‘’This would enhance maximum safety and security of lives as well as cargo on Nigerian waters,’ he said.
He further observed that the turning base on the Nigerian waterways was narrow and sharp for RoRo vessels coming into the country and urged the NPA management to see to the quick dredging of the environment in view of the danger it portends.