The Nigeria Merchant Navy Officers & Water Transport Senior Staff Association (NMNO&WTSSA) has called on the Federal Government to quickly stop the looming danger that is about to erupt in the nation’s maritime industry.
The group said the government should beam its searchlight on a group called ‘Maritime Security Experts’ disguising as seafarers who has constituted itself into a security outfit with plans to bear arms.
The Trade Union Congress-affiliated seafarer group, said it is raising the alarm in order not to mistake its members as part of those who claim to be seafarers, but are not.
The seafarers’ union alleged that the group in question engages in duping people in the name of issuing maritime security certificates that are not recognised and accepted within Nigeria and internationally.
National President of the union, Comrade Bob Yousou in a statement made available to newsmen on Friday said, “It has been a while these unscrupulous elements have been duping people in the name of maritime security certificates that are not recognised and accepted within Nigeria and internationally”.
Comrade Bob Yousou who is a Marine Engineer added that members of the union are grounded with the seafaring profession ethics thus play key roles as officers on board merchant vessels.
He warned cadets of various institutions and job seekers in the maritime sector to be extremely careful about who to engage, saying that the group in question would go all out to extort and mislead desperate youths and applicants who are eager to get admission or employment.
The union said: “There is no gain saying that this body has CAC registration. It is therefore not a yardstick to establishing a security outfit.
“Merchant Navy Officers all over the world are known to be disciplined and professional. There is no Maritime Convention that mandates seafarers to carry arms globally.
“History has it that the establishment of Nigerian Navy (NN) is as a result of the security issues encountered by seafarers plying their trade in Nigeria territorial water. It is therefore the duty of Nigerian Navy to uphold our territorial boundaries and deal with the security challenges faced by seafarers”.
The union added that, “with the coming into force of the Deep Blue Sea project, the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is not leaving any stone unturned to curb insecurity challenges in our territorial waters.
“It is germane to know that in this era of insecurity in every part of the country, one has to be careful about training people on security matters,” the President stated
According to him, ” I want to make this announcement critically clear that the security authorities in Nigeria should hunt for these miscreants who address themselves as captains with their accomplices. The certificates issued by this group of people neither conform to ILO/IMO regulation nor in line with Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) requirements.
“NIMASA today stands as the only maritime regulatory agency and I stand to be challenged that the activities of this impostors are not in tandem as far as NIMASA is concerned.
“It becomes glaring that the fake bodies are the ones militarizing our noble profession. They are bent on wearing uniform day in, day out without any plans to go onboard vessel and work, hence the conflict with Nigerian Navy and other security authorities.
“Merchant Navy uniform is the same globally but we stand against the abuse of it. Seafarers are professionals with great repute. They transport about 85 percent of the world trade.”
Kindly like us on Facebook