The Nigeria Merchant Navy Officers and Water Transport Senior Staff Association have drawn the attention of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) over alleged proliferation of fake certicates obtained by foreigners sailing on Nigerian waters.
The union has equally called on the apex maritime regulatory agency to set up a taskforce that will scrutinize Certificate of Competency (COC) being paraded by the foreign nationals.
Secretary General of the Nigerian Seafarers, Comrade Julius Efokpor disclosed this recently in Lagos during a meeting with the Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services of NIMASA, Alhaji Gambo Ahmed.
The union scribe alleged that some of the foreigners cannot discharge simple instruction by their Captains which according to him, indicate lack of competence and inability to work. He alleged that the practice is prominent with Philippines, Croatia and Pakistan nationals.
“It is our prayers that something positive be done to achieve laudable objectives and we want to note very sadly that there are disparities in placement and the wages of Nigerian seafarers and their foreign counterpart”
“Indeed the foreigners have taken over our jobs and waivers is not acceptable”, he told the ED.
The scribe further urged the agency to partner with the two unions in ensuring strict compliance with the cabotage act. According to him, the cabotage act is supposed to be a blessing to Nigerian seafarers but appears to be a curse.
While commending the agency for its capacity building for officers, the union leader called on management of the agency to train more members in order to equip them with required skills.
Efokpor stated that currently, middle level officers aboard ships require bridging courses for them to progress onto the next level.
The Secretary General added that training of officers are required in areas of Dynamic Positioning Vessels (DP), Azimuth Stern Drive, ISPS Code and others.
Responding, the Executive Director Maritime labour and Cabotage Services, Alhaji Gambo Ahmed assured the union of the agency’s support and partnership.
Gambo described the union as a key partner in development of maritime industry.
Source: Nigerian TribuneNigerian Tribune