Association moves against importation of non-seaworthy ships into Nigeria

Posted by News Express | 4 April 2016 | 2,533 times

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The Association of Marine Engineers and Surveyors (AMES) in Nigeria said it would ensure that only certified seaworthy ships were imported into Nigeria.

The President of the association, Mr Charles Uwadia, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos that the initiative would be among key issues for discussion at the association’s Maritime Technical Summit.

NAN reports that the theme of the seminar will be, ‘Challenges of Maritime Transport Industry in Nigeria,’ and would hold on April 11 in Lagos.

Uwadia said policy makers would be told the requirements that should be meant in ship acquisition into any country as obtainable worldwide.

He decried the large number of ships abandoned at the bar due to failure to meet prescribed standards for operational purposes and highlighted the importance of compliance and verification in sustainable maritime practice.

“We want to use this summit to advise stakeholders and government on how to maintain their vessels, and how to eliminate sub-standard vessels on our waters.

“Right at the outside bar, you will be surprised at the number of vessels that cannot move or those that are sub-standard because they cannot meet the minimum standard required for a vessel to be operational.”

Uwadia called on regulatory authorities concerned to be alive to their responsibilities in ensuring minimum standards were met to avoid down time in the course of operations at sea.

He said that it was important that Nigeria upheld the professional practice of engaging competent marine engineers and ship surveyors for survey reports before any ship would be allowed into the country.

According to him, Ghana has recorded excellence by ensuring a mandatory report by a professional marine engineer or surveyor from the country’s marine engineers’ body.

“In any civilised country, the first thing should be to get a competent marine engineer or a good ship surveyor to go and inspect the vessel and give a detailed report before it is purchased.

“It should not be the case of getting the seller to give you a surveyor for the job, who will give a report to ensure that the owner sells his ware, as it has always been.

“Such practices, when not checked, make people buy vessels that cannot even leave the port because they are scraps.”

Also speaking, Mr Olu Akinsoji, said the summit would address issues in human capacity development for the sub-sector as the present crop of marine engineers were ageing and would require competent replacement.

He said the summit would also consider the need to have professionals drive the policies for the sub-sector and technical input to make it useful to its purpose.

“We hardly have inputs into policy formulation. All the professionals, our colleagues who were in the ministry have left; even the inland waterways have left the ministry.

“The ministry only has administrative officers. So, when they are formulating policies, it comes out in form of laws before we even know something is going on.”

Akinsoji said the association would also deliver papers to educate the stakeholders on the importance of having marine engineers play key roles in the executing agencies, as well as equipment maintenance. (NAN)

•Photo shows Transportation Minister Chibuike Amaechi.

Source: News Express

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