Master Mariner Extols Late Man Oron Rector; Joshua Okpo

Joseph Okpo

A frontline master mariner and former president of the National Association of Master Mariners (NAMM) Capt. Adewale Ishola has described the late Rector of the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN) in Oron Akwa Ibom State as a great man who went all out to turn around the apex maritime training institution.Ishola in a chat with Shipping Position Daily last week that the late rector did all he could for the academy even as he described his death as very unfortunate.He said that Okpo made spirited efforts in speaking with private companies to get the cadets of the academy placed on ships for their sea term, and that above all he was able to restore peace in the Oron Community which before his arrival was deep in tribal wars. The foremost mariner also said that Okpo has taken great steps in the effort to upgrade MAN Oron into a maritime university.“He was a good man, he was a very generous man, he did his best to neutralize the in-fighting going on in the academy, he tried to create peace in the surrounding community but we cannot query God that he could not complete his job, I pray God will grant him eternal rest”“He went all out to hold meetings abroad, he met with many companies all in the efforts to place the cadets’ onboard vessels, he has also been working with the alumni. He also tried his best in the upgrading of the academy to university status; I was part of those that were called upon to develop the curriculum” he saidMeanwhile, the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi has appointed a new Registrar for the academy; Mr. Mkpandiok Ante Mkpandiok, who will also temporarily oversee the affairs of the academy pending the appointment of a new Rector by President Muhammadu Buhari.Before his appointment, he was Head of Personnel Department.Mkpandiok’s appointment was sequel to a November recommendation by the late Rector requesting his confirmation as replacement to Malam  Sadik Adamu, the former Registrar who retired in 2014.At an emergency management meeting of the academy held last week, the new Registrar, Mkpandiok was announced as the man in charge in the interim.