The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA says it is set to collaborate with the Nigerian Meteorological Agency NiMet to block possible loopholes identified in the last mandatory audit of Nigeria’s maritime industry by the International Maritime Organisation IMO.
Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, who disclosed this in Lagos, recently, sàid both agencies have initiated joint efforts with a view to closing gaps identified by the IMO during its last mandatory audit of the country’s maritime industry in 2015.
Environmental auditors from the IMO who in 2015 conducted a mandatory audit of Nigeria’s maritime industry, among other issues, tried to ascertain its compliance level with IMO’s maritime security and efficiency protocols on the country’s waters.
Speaking during a courtesy visit by the Director General of NiMet, Professor Mansur Matazu to the agency’s Apapa, Lagos headquarters, the NIMASA DG noted that such synergy had become expedient to forestall further lapses in the IMO’s future audit of Nigeria’s maritime sector.
He explained that the two agencies of the federal government have agreed to the setting up of a working committee to develop an action-plan and implement a Memorandum of Understanding MoU on the provision of the things recognised as missing from the maritime industry audit.
“The Collaboration with NiMet is a necessity; it is not for convenience. IMO had during the audit of the Nigerian Maritime Administration some years ago identified some gaps, which we believe can be closed with effective collaboration among critical stakeholders.
“Therefore, this cooperation between NIMASA and NiMet is vital for the documentation and filling of the gaps. We have established a platform for action and devised various strategies for the achievement of our set goals”, Dr. Jamoh stated.
On his part, the NiMET DG said the agency desires to provide services to aid the movement of vessels on Nigeria’s waters. He said “With climate change and its increasing intensity, this is the time for collaboration. NiMet weather forecasts are over 95 per cent in accuracy.”
The IMO Member State Audit Scheme IMSAS commenced as a voluntary Scheme in 2006 and became a treaty obligation in January 2016. It aims to promote the consistent and effective implementation of applicable IMO instruments and to assist Member States to improve their capabilities, while contributing to the enhancement of global and individual Member State’s overall performance in compliance with the requirements of the instruments to which it is a party.