NIMASA commences issuance of new certificates for ship registration
To prevent the entry of unseaworthy and substandard ships into Nigeria, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) on July 1 commenced the issuance of new certificates of registration while phasing out the old permits.
The Director-General of the Agency, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, explained that the introduction of the new registration was part of an effort to ensure that the Ship Registry complies with international standards. The certificates are being enhanced with more security features.
Jamoh stated: “We are restructuring the Nigerian Ship Registration Office to serve you more efficiently and effectively. We are determined to grow our national fleet and tonnage to an enviable height.
“We are committed to ensuring that the Ship Registry remains of international standard and this is the reason we have enhanced our certificates with more security features that would stand the test of time. The all-encompassing process of issuance will ensure robust screening of vessels that would visit our waters.”
He disclosed that the new regulation, which took effect on July 1, involved the Certificate of Nigerian Registry, Provisional Certificate of Registry, Certificate of Nigerian Registry for Bareboat Chartered Vessel, Fishing Boat and Certificate of Cabotage Ship Registry for wholly-owned Nigerian vessels among others.
The Certificate of Cabotage Ship Registry for bareboat chartered vessels and foreign-owned vessels are also affected.
Others are Certificate of Cabotage Ship Registry for a joint venture-owned vessel, Deletion Certificate, Bill of Sale and Transcript of Registry.
The Certificate of Mortgage to Secure Account Current and the Certificate of Freedom of Encumbrance have also been changed.
He however maintained that all existing certificates issued by the Registrar of Ships before the commencement of the new regulation remain valid and should be carried on board vessels until their expiration. But vessel owners or Masters may apply for the issuance of their existing certificates
“The Merchant Shipping Act, 2007 makes it mandatory for the Originals of Certificates of Registry to be carried onboard vessels at all times,” Jamoh said.
A statement issued by the Assistant Director, Public Relations Edward Osagie, stated that issuance of the certificates is a fulfillment of Section 30 of the Merchant Shipping Act 2007, which provides, inter alia, that “the Registrar of Ships shall on completion of the registration of a ship, issue a certificate of registration in such form as may be approved by the Agency”.