The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) said that it has started arresting vessels for violating provisions of the Cabotage Law that Nigerians should be employed onboard vessels.
Even though he did not disclose names of the arrested vessels, NIMASA’s Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, Ibrahim Jubril equally confirmed to journalists in Lagos at the weekend that the agency has equally acquired fast intervention vessels which the agency uses in hot pursuit of the airing vessels.
Jubril also said that in order to have an accurate data of available maritime labour in the sector, NIMASA has recently come up with an electronic register of all maritime labour in order to ensure jobs are provided for them in line with the Cabotage law.
“I would like to inform the maritime industry that on the part of NIMASA as a regulator, we have put in measures to ensure full implementation of the Cabotage Act in Nigeria, particularly on the fourth pillar which has to do with building of ships and carriage of cargoes and the manning aspect of it”
“What we have put in place recently is to come up with an electronic register of all maritime labour that would enable us plan better for the industry, such that whenever there are identified jobs for seafarers, it would be carried out by Nigerians and Nigerians would be placed on the job”
“In line with the presidential executive order number 4, we have come out in full force in terms of our enforcement to ensure that only Nigerians are engaged onboard. Before the release of this presidential order, we in NIMASA have come up with a marine notice that mentioned that we would have zero tolerance for any waiver at all”
“We now detain vessels whom we have identified as carrying foreigners onboard, very soon we are going to intensify on that. We have acquired fast intervention vessels recently, which is going to help us pursue these ships all around our waters to make sure that proper inspection is carried out and proper placement of labour is done in the industry”, he said.