SOLAS: NIMASA moves to enforce high standards for vessels on Nigerian waters
… Woos classification societies
Dr. Dakuku Peterside, The Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, during a recent engagement he had in Singapore with officials of the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), Asia Pacific Region, led by the President and Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Derek Novak, said that Nigeria is committed to continue setting high standards for vessels and oil platforms operating within her territorial waters in line with the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS ’74) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
Peterside stressed that Nigeria is not and cannot be a dumping ground for substandard vessels and, therefore, solicited the support and cooperation of classification societies such as the ABS to establish and maintain high technical standards for construction and maintenance of vessels and other maritime structures.
He said that the maritime sector, which is the facilitator of the national economy in Nigeria, is growing at a rapid rate and, therefore, needs all the support it can get.
He advocated for regular ship survey to ensure compliance with set standards, and assured the delegation that it is one of the priorities of the new administration in NIMASA.
In his remarks, Novak said that the ABS has been working with Nigeria for a long time, and will continue to maintain the high standards for which the organisation is known.
He promised to work with his counterpart in West and Central Africa, so that NIMASA can benefit from some of the training opportunities the ABS offers.
Novak expressed optimism that Nigeria is properly positioned to emerge as the shipping powerhouse of West and Central Africa, if the country puts her house in order and build on her infrastructural and human capacity.
He also identified Singapore as a great maritime nation from which Nigeria should seek closer ties.
The Vice President of the ABS, Asia Pacific Region, Mr. Thomas Tan, was also at the meeting.