The Federal Government, on Thursday, inaugurated the governing boards of two major maritime agencies, the Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) and Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) stating that this will be a step towards revamping the sick Nigerian economy.
While performing the inaugural ceremony in separate events, Thursday, the Minister of Transportation, Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, first said that the approval of the appointment of the board of NIMASA by Mr. President in August, was one of the Federal Government efforts to create an economy that is vibrant and sustainable and in line with best practice, which is also embarked on the restructuring and repositioning of various parastatals under the Ministry with the Agency.
According to Amaechi, NIMASA has two broad mandates, which are to promote the development of indigenous commercial shipping capacity in international and coastal shipping trade and to regulate and promote maritime safety, security, marine pollution and maritime labour.
He said that these mandates are achieved through the activities of shipping promotion including fleet acquisition, and expansion, manpower development, inter agency collaboration.
Also on its duties are maritime safety and security, environmental management and maritime labour administration as well as ship registration.
While directing the inaugurated board on areas of focus, said that the board should include setting operational administrative policies in accordance with Government policy directives aimed at assisting the agency to archive its mandate.
He reminded the NiMASA board that its duty is expedient in engendering a harmonious working relationship with the management of the agency.
Amaechi, however, stated that the board should also be guided by the suggestions made by the minister of transport in the quest to finding suitable policies for the industry.
On the turn of the Nigeria Port Authority, chaired by Chief Emmanuel Babajide, the Minister, was apt to say that the Federal Governments move to set up the governing Board, is in order to foster an economy that is robust, transparent, accountable and in line with best international practice.
The transportation Minister, pointed out that the NPA Board, is to construct develop ports, docks, harbours piers wharves, canals, water courses, embankment revetment and jetties. Also part of its job, is to invest and deal with monies of the authority not immediately required on such securities or in such investment and manner as may, from time to time be expedient.
The board should also carry on the business of carrier, by land or sea, stevedore, wharf finger ware houseman or lighterage man. It will also appoint lincense and manage pilot of vessels and reclaim excavate enclose or envelop any of the lands required or vested in the Authority, as well as enter into agreement with any person for the operation or the provision of any of the port facilities which may be operated or provided by the Authority.
The Minister, however, observed that in line with the Federal Public Service Rules chapter 7, that the Minister, may give Board of Directors directions of general character relating to general or particular matters to the statutory body in the discharge of Board functions.
That the Minister can also exercise control of parastatals at policy level through the baor5d parastatals.
He further told Board members that their “appointment is strictly guided by the federal government Circular Reference number WC/S/04/S.310/T/64 OF 8TH April, 2016 on revised frequency of meeting for part time members of government committees, Boards of Federal Agencies, statutory corporations and government-owned companies issued by National salaries and income wages commission, as a measure to reduce the cost of Governance.
Responding on behalf of the inaugurated board members, both the NIMASA Board Chairman, Major-General Jonathan India Garba and Chief Emmanuel Babajide of the NPA, in similar vein promised to utilize the opportunities given to them by the Federal Government to revamp the suffering Nigerian economy by exploring the maritime industry.