Saturday, 10th June 2023

‘Technology critical to expansion in maritime sector’

The Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Dakuku Peterside has identified technology as an enabler required for the growth of Nigeria’s maritime industry. 
 Dakuku Peterside

Dakuku Peterside

The Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Dakuku Peterside has identified technology as an enabler required for the growth of Nigeria’s maritime industry.

Welcoming members of the Lagos Chapter of the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) led by the President, Mr. Tope Aladenusi to his office in Lagos, Peterside noted that technology is dynamic, adding that NIMASA is always willing to avail itself to technological changes.

According to Peterside, Digital Transformation Strategy is one of the five Medium Term Strategic Growth Plans of his administration intended to reposition the Agency and the maritime industry for greater efficiency and effectiveness.

Peterside said: “If there is one enabler that will change the way we work, it is technology and we are prepared to maximize its use in repositioning the Agency. That is why we welcome partnerships utilising technology that will be beneficial to the growth of the industry and the nation as a whole.”

Earlier in his address, Aladenusi expressed the readiness of the body to partner with the Agency in three core areas.

He identified the three core areas to include creating trust in the business technology environment, setting up standards and framework to aid regulatory oversight and training of NIMASA staff.

A statement issued by NIMASA’s Head, Corporate Communication, Hajia Lami Tumaka explained that in “fulfillment of its digital transformation programme, the administration of Dr. Peterside has commenced the re-engineering of processes and systems in NIMASA through automation to engender greater efficiency and eliminate revenue leakages”.

Meanwhile, NIMASA has joined the rest of the world in commemorating the International Day of the Seafarer with a call on stakeholders to enhance the living and working conditions of seafarers.

In a welcome address, Peterside described the seafaring profession as indispensable stating that seafarers are the unsung heroes that ensure that the wheel of global commerce keeps rolling.

He explained that it was important for humanity to understand and appreciate what seafarers endure at sea in harsh and turbulent waters at even personal danger to their lives just to make sure that goods and services get to their destinations safely.

The DG said: “Today, presents a rare opportunity for the world to celebrate the Seafarer who is rarely acknowledged as the core component in the development of global shipping, perhaps the reason the IMO has its theme for this year’s celebration as ‘At Sea for All’. On our part as NIMASA, we will continue to enforce the relevant provisions of international instruments to protect and improve the working and living conditions of seafarers.”

Peterside who was represented by the Agency’s Director of Administration and Human Resources, Ibrahim Jibril “also hinted that the Agency has identified five critical areas in repositioning the sector for greater efficiency of which welfare and capacity building are critical parts in ensuring the desired growth in the sector”.

Peterside used the opportunity to call on all maritime stakeholders to identify with the theme of this year’s Day of the Seafarer campaign by appreciating the invaluable contribution of seafarers to our wellbeing.

In a related development, NIMASA  is to automate its operation as part of measures to curtail revenue leakages and enhance its activities.

Addressing representative of Shipping Association of Nigeria (SAN) in his office in Lagos, Peterside said the current practice is being reviewd to ensure greater efficiency.

He also assured the delegation that the Agency will institute more transparent ways of calculating the three percent levy charged on all inbound and outbound cargo.

Peterside said: “We are automating our payment platform in line with our strategic growth plan to ensure greater efficiency in the payment process. The new process will be integrated with similar platforms of sister Agencies in order to correctly ascertain levies chargeable per freight and eliminate the bottlenecks currently being experienced.”

The DG according to a statement informed the delegation that the Agency’s commitment to the elimination of piracy and other criminal activities on the waterways is unwavering, adding that the Federal Government through the Office of the National Security Adviser will soon launch a high capacity satellite system that will assist the military in dealing with maritime crimes.

Peterside urged the shipping companies to support the Agency’s capacity building programme by providing sea time experience for cadets sponsored under the Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme (NSDP).

Representative of the Shipping firm according to the statement issued by NIMASA’s head, Corporate Communication, Hajia Lami Tumaka, commended the DG for his commitment.

While promising to support the capacity building initiatives of the Agency by providing the requisite sea time experience for the NSDP cadets, the Shipping Association “expressed their commitment to the development of the Nigerian maritime industry”.

Meanwhile, Peterside has restated the Agency’s determination to partner training institutions to provide internationally recognised training in basic and advanced maritime courses.