NIMASA calls for improved welfare for indigenous seafarers

As Nigeria joined the rest of the world to celebrate the World Seafarers’ day, the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside has advocated a decent and improved pay package for Nigeria seafarers.

Thus was even as the DG directed indigenous ship owners to employ qualified Nigeria seafarers against the practice of engaging foreign seafarers.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO), designate June 25th as the International Day of the Seafarer as a way to recognize that almost everything that we use in our daily lives has been directly or indirectly affected by sea transport.

The purpose of the day is to give thanks to seafarers for their contribution to the world economy and the civil society, and for the risks and personal costs they bear while on their jobs.

Peterside who disclosed this at the celebration of World Seafarers’ Day tagged, “Seafarers’ Matters”, at Onne Port-Harcourt said the agency is committed to full implementation of International Labour Organisation’s Maritime Labour Convention (MLC), 2006 especially as it relates to seafarers welfare.

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“The agency as a maritime regulator is committed to the full implementation of the International Labour Organisation’s Maritime Labour Convention (MLC), 2006 especially as it relates to seafarers welfare.

To this end, the National joint industrial Council (NJIC) comprising of tripartite stakeholders have reconvened to fashion out a decent wage and improved working and living conditions for the seafarers in line with the provisions of the Convention and comparable comparable comparable is obtainable internationally.”

Peterside assured that once the collective bargaining agreement is signed, shipowners will commence its full implementation.

On the employment of Indigenous Shipowners, the DG said the agency is engaging shipowners and seafarers employers on the need to provide employment to qualified Nigerian seafarers.

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According to him, “The agency is also engaging shipowners and Seafarers employers on the need to provide gainful employment to qualified Nigerian Seafarers.

“In other words, it is important that our shipowners should give some level of preference to our shipowners especially in the  Cabotage trade as against the practice of engaging foreign shipowners.

Peterside who also doubles as the Chairman Association of African Maritime Administrations (AAMA) charged indigenous shipowners to be proud of Nigerian Seafarers.

“As Nigerian and maritime operators we should be proud of our seafarers and also encourage them to develop their careers/competencies like their foreign counterparts.