Democracy: Peterside Urges Nigerians, Africans To Direct Their Destiny.

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… Preaches Love, Peaceful Coexistence as Nigerians Celebrates Eid-El-Kabir

The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside has urged Nigerians and the entire African continent to jealously guide the fledgling democracy which is gradually taking roots in the continent, noting that it will help catalyze the economic development in the continent and by extension the maritime sector.

Dr Dakuku who is also the Chairman of Association of African Maritime Administration (AAMA) stated this in Lagos on Tuesday during breakfast with some journalist in Lagos to mark the Eid-El-Kabir celebrations.

Speaking further, he said that AAMA under his leadership has prioritized projecting Africa as a block deserving a larger share of global maritime trade based on its contributions.

“Some African countries still operate along colonial inclination and that tends to slow down development particularly in the maritime sector. In those countries where democracy is fully thriving such as Nigeria, stakeholders in the maritime sector now speak with the voice of development, independent of colonial masters. AAMA, under my watch has been able to give African maritime sector a new voice, particularly at the International Maritime Organization, IMO”, he said.

While commenting on how the Agency has become one of the leading parastatals of the Federal Government in its huge contribution to the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF), the NIMASA DG said that some policies his administration adopted alongside the Treasury Single Account TSA was responsible. “NIMASA has transformed from contributing barely 3 billion naira to over 20 billion naira annually to the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) and it will keep getting better,” he said.

Furthermore, he said, “in order to block financial leakages, we subscribed to a full bouquet of the Lloyds and Clarkson intelligence; this made it almost impossible for any vessel calling at our ports to escape or under declare; the TSA and our collaboration with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) amongst other agencies also played a an important role”.

He also restated NIMASA’s commitment to growing indigenous capacity in the sector, noting that the engagement currently ongoing between the Agency and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was aimed at securing special interest rates and intervention funds for vessel acquisition and other ancillary transactions in the sector, all geared towards improving the Cabotage regime and the realization of a robust maritime sector.

Dr. Dakuku who referred to the maritime sector as a goldmine, used the opportunity to call for more objectivity in the reportage of activities of the sector, and assured that the Agency will continue to embrace all forms of collaborative initiatives that can help boost the fortunes of the nation’s maritime sector.

Meanwhile, in his Eid-El-Kabir message, the NIMASA DG urged Nigerians to love one another and live peacefully as they celebrate Sallah, adding that the period is not only for merriment but a time to reflect on happenings in the country.

“The Sallah celebration is not only meant for wining and dining but a time to reflect on re-dedicating our love for the nation. We have to exhibit values of love, peace and prayer for the country. We should also use the occasion in striving to continue to serve humanity irrespective of tribe, creed or political leanings.

As our country grapples with various challenges of development, this is also an apt period for all of us to pray earnestly to God to continue to bless Nigeria as well as guide and guard it as we approach the 2019 elections,” he stated.

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