Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has assured the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, of support and strengthened partnership in the fight against maritime crime.
The Director-General of NIMASA, Dr Bashir Jamoh, made this known in a statement issued by the agency’s Assistant Director, Public Relations, Mr Osagie Edward, in Lagos on Wednesday.
Jamoh, at a meeting with the IGP in Abuja, promised to extend the ongoing collaboration between NIMASA and other security agencies under the deep blue project to the marine unit of the police.
He noted that it would be in areas of capacity building and provision of patrol support.
While both parties applauded the reduction in piracy attacks in the blue waters, confirmed by notable international bodies like International Maritime Organisation (IMO), they identified the need for enhanced policing of the nation’s brown waters.
“NIMASA is seeking close integration and collaboration of Nigerian marine police with its recently-launched waterways security architecture, the deep blue project, to achieve an all-encompassing outcome, stretching from the blue waters,” he said.
Jamoh urged all parties to maximise the use of technology in monitoring the waters.
He commended the ongoing integration of NIMASA’s command, control, computer communication and information System (C4i), with the Falcon Eye of navy and the police’s i247 for easy coordination and intelligence sharing.
The director-general described the police as a strategic partner, whose operation and support were essential to sustaining and improving on the gains already recorded in the anti-piracy drive and safety of small crafts.
He added that the police were also critical in helping to prosecute the suspects arrested under the SPOMO law.
The IGP commended NIMASA’s efforts, under its present management, and reiterated the resolve of the force to fight crimes all over the country, including the territorial waters.
He described the marine police as a very important arm of the force, considering the strategic importance of the waters to the economic and social wellbeing of the country.
The meeting had in attendance other senior police officers, including Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG) Garba Umar, who is Head of National Central Bureau of Interpol in Nigeria.
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