The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside has stated the automation of the Agency’s process is an initiative geared towards reducing human interface, thereby bringing about better efficiency and improvement in the turn-around-time of shipping agents, vessels calling at the nation’s ports and all forms of transactions in the sector.
The DG who made this statement during a Stakeholders forum organized by the Agency in Lagos on the implementation of automated business processes, called SAGE ERP X3 said the benefits that would be derived from the digitalization process would yield enormous benefits not just for the Stakeholders, but for the country at large.
“In line with the Federal Government’s Executive Order on Ease of Doing Business, we are committed to improving turnaround time of vessels, reduction of human interface in majority of our transactions with our stakeholders and this is in our bid to ensure transparency and professionalism that the sector demands to grow,’’ he said.
The DG who was represented by the Director in charge of Special Duties, External Relations and Technical Cooperation of the Agency, Hajia Lami Tumaka disclosed that through the Agency’s Survey, Inspection and Certification Transformation Programme, over 3,752 Certificates of Competency (CoC) were issued in 2017 to successful seafarers which represented a 149% increase over the same period in 2016.
Speaking further, he observed that a total number of 1,880 certificates were authenticated for Stakeholders in 2017 which was an improvement on the 1013 which were cleared in 2016.
The NIMASA DG also made it known that the number of Nigerian seafarers placed onboard vessels from January to June of this year is 2,337, representing a 58.9% increase in the number of employed seafarers.
“For us in NIMASA, we are happy that the confidence of stakeholders in the Agency has increased; more importantly, there has been an increase in employment and wealth creation which is in line with the Federal Government’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, (ERGP). We will work more closely with you and keep relying on the support we have got from you over time, because without the Stakeholders, there will be no NIMASA”, the DG asserted.
The Chairman of African Shipowners Association, Mr. Temisan Omatseye, who was at the event stated that in his opinion the current Management of NIMASA with the roll out of the SAGE ERP X3 automation platform continues to steer the maritime industry in the right direction. He also pledged the continuous support of Stakeholders to every initiative of the Agency geared towards realizing a robust maritime sector.
It may be recalled that as part of the strategy to improve the lot of the maritime industry, the Management of the Agency set out on a 5 point agenda namely; Survey, Inspection & Certification Transformation Programme, Environment, Security, Emergency Search & Rescue Transformation Initiative, Digital Strategy Reforms, Capacity Building & Promotional Initiatives and Structural & Cultural Reforms. The Agency has remained focused in vigorously pursuing these strategic pillars, which has seen to the feat achieved in the Nigerian maritime sector.