Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside announced the decision of the Executive Management of the Agency to offer automatic employment to twenty (20) beneficiaries of the Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme (NSDP) Cadets that passed out with distinctions in their various fields of study.
The Director General who made this known during the flag-off ceremony of the first phase of the NIMASA fully sponsored sea time training for cadets expressed delight that hope beckons for the Nigeria maritime sector through this feat.
He acknowledged the fact that sea time berth is a global challenge, which the International Maritime Organisation
(IMO) also admits, but Nigeria is leaving no stone unturned in changing the tide, hence the Agency’s determination to ensure that all the cadets in the NSDP scheme get the mandatory sea time training in batches.
While giving a breakdown of the beneficiaries of the programme, he stated "so far the NSDP initiative has produced 243 graduates, 1,600 cadets at various stages of completion of the programme out of which 887 are ready for sea-time training".
In the first phase, 150 Cadets under the scheme are bound for Arab Academy of Science, Technology and Marine Transportation in Alexandria, Egypt to commence their mandatory sea-time training, 89 others are bound for the South Tyneside College, United Kingdom for their on-board sea-time training, making it a total of 239 in the first phase of the programme.
The Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme was conceived in 2008 as a deliberate policy to ameliorate the dearth in certified and qualified seafarers and of course the depletion of seafarers in our national pool due mainly to age and migratory instinct for greener pastures by seafarers.
The NSDP scheme was implemented in September, 2009 to complement full implementation of the Cabotage Act, 2003, which in itself is geared towards strengthening indigenous tonnage capacity with one of its cardinal objectives being that coastal vessels are to be exclusively manned by Nigerians.
A photo news from the phase one of the NSDP sea time training sponsored by NIMASA that held in Lagos is added with this.