By Albert Akota in Abuja
The Director General of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside has re-assured Nigerians of working assiduously to tackle piracy, sea robbery and all illegal activities within the maritime domain through the establishment of the Maritime Guard Command.
Peterside gave the assurance yesterday in Abuja during National Tourism Transport Summit and Expo.
He said the agency with combined effort of the Nigeria Navy, Nigeria Air force, Nigeria Police Force and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps are championing the anti-bill presently with National Assembly to provide legal framework for punishing piracy and other maritime crimes.
According to him, adequate sanctions against offenders will serve as a deterrent to others as the agency has already achieved over 85 percent compliance on International Ship and Port Security (ISPS) code implementation in ensuring ports and vessels within Nigeria’s maritime domain are protected against any form of terrorists attack.
He reiterated that, the agency has installed a satellite surveillance system, a costal radar system and a global maritime distress and safety system as well as electronic and digital facilities that would enhance maritime domain awareness capability.
Dr. Dakuku Peterside who was represented by the Director of Operation in the Agency, Mr. Anthony Ogadi said the agency is at the verge of acquiring state of art maritime safety enforcement, building its capacity for search and rescue operation with the approval of the Minister of Transportation in order to increase the search number and rescue marshal from 100 to 1000.
Speaking earlier, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed said transportation needs in tourism promotion and development among others could best be seen in the maintenance of the existing roads, construction of more roads, rail track, sea and air transportation as well as the local construction of local airports to enhance local flight operations for the growth of domestic tourism.
The Minister who was represented by Deaconess Grace Isu, said tourism is all about transportation, hospitality and movement of people in air and land which are the two dominant modes of tourism travel in the twenty first century.