By Aisha Cole
Lagos – The Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Dakuku Peterside, has said that human capacity development initiative is a panacea to the growing unemployment rate in the country.
Peterside said this in a message to the First Annual Lecture of Swaaya Ltd., Publishers of “Freedom Online News’’ with the theme: “Unemployment: How do we tame this monster?’’.
The Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, Mr Gambo Ahmed, represented the director-general on the occasion.
He said that to stem the tide, NIMASA, through its Nigerian Seafarers Development Programme (NSDP) had trained over 2,500 Nigerian students in various maritime-related courses in maritime institutions outside the country.
Peterside said that the capacity development initiatives embarked upon by the agency were geared toward taming the foreseen lacuna in the seafaring profession in the nearest future.
He said that the NSDP scheme, which had already started producing graduates, would soon take a new look.
“Nigeria will also be a large exporter of seafarers like India and the Philippines who generate millions of dollars from the pool of its seafarers in the globally market,’’ the director-general said.
He promised Nigerians of the unflinching commitment of the current Management of NIMASA to ensure a virile maritime sector, through its capacity building initiatives.
Peterside called on Nigerians to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s -led administration’s zero tolerance for corruption.
He said this would enable the government and its agencies to achieve their set objectives particularly in curbing unemployment.
“Let me use this opportunity to call on all Nigerians, regardless of race, religion or political interest or affiliations to support the Federal Government in its quest to defeat corruption, which has eaten deep into the fortunes of the economy to make the country great again.
“I assure you all, that very soon, unemployment issues will soon be a thing of the past, ” Peterside said.
He said the agency had made adequate provision in its 2017 budget for sea time training for the beneficiaries of the NSDP scheme to qualify the cadets to practice their trade anywhere in the world.