The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) says it has recruited 250 new cadets to man its various platforms in the Lagos-Bayelsa coastal corridor.
The agency’s Director General, Dr Bashir Jamoh made this known to newsmen in Port Harcourt .
Jamoh, who was represented by his Special Assistant on Communications and Strategy, Ubong Essien, at a news conference, said the recruitment exercise was part of the current drive to develop local capacity for improved operations.
“So, the 250 cadets are about to be sent for training as part of our commitment to develop manpower to man our many platforms that are coming on stream soon.
“We felt that we must develop our hands locally, which will have ripple effects on the nation’s economy,” he said.
Jamoh said he was working hard to ensure the full implementation of his three-point agenda of boosting maritime security, safety and shipping development.
He said that the new Deep Blue Project (DBP), which would be launched in the coming weeks, would rid the nation’s maritime environment of illegalities.
“The DBP is the nation’s Integrated Surveillance and Security Architecture that will sanitise our maritime industry.
“NIMASA is investing in air assets through acquisition of three special mission helicopters; two special mission aircraft and four unmanned air vehicles.
“On maritime assets, the agency is also investing in two massive well-equipped special mission vessels that will patrol the high seas.
“The vessels have capacity to deploy about 17 fast-moving interceptor boats – which are designed for interdiction purposes should there be any crises requiring swift response.
“On human assets, we have well-trained Special Forces from the various security agencies, including, navy, army and police, among other security agencies,” he said.
The director general said the agency had also integrated the services of the special police unit, C4I to run its intelligence gathering centre.
According to him, the agency has invested in a computer command and control centre that will be used to effectively monitor activities on the waterways.
Jamoh called for support of the media to publicise the agency’s operations as well as educate the members of the public on activities of NIMASA.