By Godfrey Bivbere
Stakeholders in the mariÂ Â time industry have called on governments of littoral states to exploit the potentials available in the sector for the development of indigenes and their various states.
The stakeholders’ positionÂ made known in Badagry Thursday at a seminar on The Role of Seafaring in a Nationâ€™s Economy, noted that these states should encourage maritime capacity development as a way of checking unemployment and youth restiveness.
They also stressed the need for the littoral states to establish training institutes while those that have already done so should be supported to ensure that they develop competent seafarers for the nation.
According to a communique at the end of the seminar organised by the Maritime Reportersâ€™ Association of Nigeria (MARAN), the stakeholders noted that â€œState governments, especially the littoral states should encourage maritime capacity development as a way of checking unemployment and youth restiveness, through establishment of training institutions, while those that have done that should ensure that they provide all the support needed to produce competent seafarers.â€
They pointed out that there is a wide opportunity available for seafarers not just at the national level where there is shortage presently but also at the global level as well.
The stakeholders also blamed the death of the Nigerian National Shipping Line (NNSL) which affected the production of maritime manpower for the country and as a result, all the cadets being churned out from the training institutions do not have opportunities for sea training which will enable them to be certificated as seafarers.
They also explained the need for the establishment of more maritime institutions to produce the required maritime manpower while the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron should be adequately funded to enable it admit and develop more Nigerians youths.
The stakeholders in the communique stressed that â€œthere is need for a national merchant navy training board for the country as is the case in serious maritime nations.
â€œA National Merchant Navy Training Board should be established as the specialization and scope of maritime labour training is beyond the capability of the National Board for Technical Education, (NBTE).â€
They also called on the â€œFederal Government to urgently implement the report of the committee it set up for extensive study of the nationâ€™s maritime domain.â€