By Godwin Oritse
Executive Secretary ofthe Nigerian Shippersâ€™ Council (NSC), Captain Adamu Biu has said that the development of adequate manpower for all the sub-sectors of the transport sector is key the development of the nationâ€™s economy and its growth.
Bui who stated this recentlyÂ when the executive members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Transport Media Chapel paid a courtesy visit on him at the Council Corporate Headquarters in Apapa, Lagos said that if the present trend of inadequate manpower in the transport sector continues a time will come when Nigeria will not have core professional to pilot the affairs of the transport sector.
â€œLook at the maritime sector for instance, some of us who happen to be master mariners will die as master mariners and there will be no master mariners for the next fifty years if this trend continues. It took some of us fifteen years to be trained as master mariners but today where are the training facilities? Where are the ships that people can go and get the requisite sea experience? We have a nautical college in Oron which we are trying to revive but that cannot carter for the need of Nigeria because our population is increasing on a daily basis and the transport sector as it is, is key to national development and growthâ€ Biu said.
The NSC boss who called on government to concentrate on manpower building for the maritime sector said that that it is only when Nigeria develop and encourage indigenous capacity that the nation can control its seaborne trade.
â€œI donâ€™t think we are challenging the powers that be sufficiently in terms of training manpower I think this is where we should concentrate on because Ghana now has a Regional Maritime University. We started before them. So letâ€™s build up the industry especially in the area of manpower, we donâ€™t have a single 15,000 tones vessel today that is registered with Nigerian flag. We still depend on foreigners, we say today that we want to control freight, port charges but we have not asked ourselves the question of who is giving us the bottoms to carry the cargoes, which is the foreigners but if we have the vessels it will more competition and our government we have a sayâ€ Biu stated.
Biu however charged the visiting journalists to revive the spirit of investigative journalism rather than looking at the scandalous side of issues saying that investigative journalism will help to build and ensure a virile economy.
Speaking earlier the NUJ Transport Media, Chairman, Mr. Kingsley Anaroke who led the other executive members on the visit congratulated the NSC boss and the Councilâ€™s staff on the serious steps the Council has taken in the pass to ensure the protection of shippersâ€™ interest.He called on the Council tom partner the chapelÂ to help in taking the transport sector in Nigeria to an enviable height