Ernest Chinwo in Port Harcourt
The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and Nigerian Navy Dockyard in Port Harcourt yesterday agreed to collaborate to ensure the safety and navigability of the country’s inland waterways.
The two organisations made the pledge when the Managing Director NIWA, Chief George Muoghalu undertook a facility tour of the Naval Dockyard as well as the facilities located at NIWA Marine base, Port Harcourt.
At the Naval Dockyard yesterday, Commodore Superintendent and MD/CEO, Naval Shipyard Limited, Commodore Abolaji Orederu said NIWA was one of the organisations the shipyard had been coveting collaboration with the strategic and critical enterprise of waterways services.
Orederu said the Naval Shipyard Limited “is in a collaborative venture arrangement with thee Admiralty China Shipbuilding Offshore International Ltd (ACSOIL). Naval Shipyard Limited is one of the subsidiaries of the Nigerian Navy Group carrying out ship/boat building and maintenance.
He said the Nigerian Navy has made phenomenal progress in realising the local content in its marine engineering endeavours, adding that the first naval ship was built in 2012, the second ship is build in 2016 while the third ship was undergoing construction.
He said: “We are therefore thrilled by this visit to the shipyard. I am particularly happy that you came with your managers in the NIWA Port Harcourt. It will enhance cooperation and understanding on our both operations.”
On his part, Muoghalu explained the reason for the tour, saying both the Nigerian Navy and the management of NIWA “can do a lot together working in synergy to make our waterways secure.”
Muoghalu said: “We are trying to ensure that our water ways are yearly navigable. The issue of security is still there but we are collaborating with other security agencies to ensure the security of the waterways.
“The issue of floating debris, water hyacinth and all other security threats are being addressed,” Muoghalu said.