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NPA decries dearth of qualified hydrographers, partners Navy on capacity building

By Adaku Onyenucheya
23 March 2022   |   4:02 am
The Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko, has said that the agency is currently facing a dearth of qualified hydrographers, indicating readiness to partner with the Nigerian Navy in providing training for its staff.

MD of NPA, Bello-Koko

The Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko, has said that the agency is currently facing a dearth of qualified hydrographers, indicating readiness to partner with the Nigerian Navy in providing training for its staff.

Bello-Koko said the organisation is ready to work with the Nigerian Navy to localise and modernise training aspects of hydrographic survey for the benefit of the maritime economy.

In a statement by the General Manager, Corporate and strategic communications, Ibrahim Nasiru, the NPA helmsman made this promise when he received the new Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Yakubu Wambai, along with senior officers of the command, on a courtesy visit to the authority’s corporate headquarters in Lagos.

Acknowledging the long and cordial relations between the two organisations, Bello-Koko, expressed optimism that partnering with the Nigerian Navy Hydrographic School would guarantee high-level manpower at a lower cost for the authority.

He assured the new FOC of NPA’s unflinching co-operation in the task of protecting the country’s waterways against inland and coastal threats to safeguard navigation.

The NPA boss expressed his management’s appreciation of the role played by the command concerning the “360 Degrees Security Exercise” that was recently carried out to remove all physical contraptions and unscrupulous human elements identified as security threats around the seaports in Lagos.

He informed the FOC that a repeat of the exercise is set to take place in the nearest future, adding that NPA would continue to work with the Command in protecting the port access against threats.

Bello-Koko applauded the Nigerian Navy on the delivery and commissioning of “NNS LANA”, a modern purpose-built hydrographic research vessel that would enable the Navy to perform operations such as oceanographic survey, hydrographic survey, search and rescue (SAR), fishery survey and patrol in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of Nigeria.

He also commended the Navy for quality manpower development in hydrographic surveys for the country.

The new FOC West described the courtesy visit to the NPA as customary and necessary to advance the strong bond between the two institutions.

He appreciated the NPA for the tremendous support provided by the Nigerian Navy over the years in its quest to effectively safeguard the country’s territorial waters.

Wambai informed his host that the quality support enjoyed by the Nigerian Navy from organisations like the NPA led to the International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) recent declaration of Nigeria as a piracy-free country.