The General Secretary, Nigerian Indigenous Ship-owners Association (NISA), Captain Dada Labinjo on Friday called on the Federal Government to adopt policies that would enable indigenous shipping to become more relevant.
Labinjo, a contestant for the post of NISA Presidency made the call in his Bombay Crescent, Apapa Lagos Office, urging his members, particularly those who have wandered to London, as a result of the pathetic state of the industry, to come back home to continue the struggle to reposition the industry, adding that under the next dispensation, Nigerian Government must consider Nigerian ship owners for contract awards.
“We must get our jobs back”, he declared, stressing that with the forthcoming election, NISA must be able to put in putting in place, credible officers who can selflessly protect the interest of the association.
“The forthcoming election will provide us an opportunity to elect those who will run the affairs of the Association for the next 2 years. The new administration will be required to turn around the fortunes of our members for good; the situation where our members are jobless/have no contracts while our domestic trade is taken up by foreigners must be reversed.
“We shall call into the Association all the Nigerian Shipowners and maritime operators who are yet to be members of the Association, engage the Government agencies (NIMASA, Nigerian Content Monitoring Board, Nigerian Shippers Council, NIWA, Nigerian Navy et al) to ensure that the intendments of the Cabotage Act and the Nigerian Content. Act of providing jobs/contracts for our members are realised, in addition to arranging financing for the members to develop international and coastal shipping”, he stated, expressing his joy that several other shipowners were also vying as a demonstration of their desire to serve.
“This is indeed a call to service and nothing more. It will require persons with good knowledge of maritime matters and associated issues, selfless, passionate and team players. Above all, such persons must be ready to sacrifice their time n the pursuit of the good of the Association”, he explained further.
Responding to questions, Capt. Labinjo who praised the selflessness and commitment of the current NISA Chairman, Chief Isaac Jolapamo, highlighted that, as the General Secretary of the Association, the last decade,he had come to realized that all is now needs, is to build on the legacies of the current administration, via new approach.
Reiterating his commitment, he said he was glad, not only in investing his energy in the NISA dream, but also in the fact that more and more people are now convinced that the association is worth fight for.
“I have put all my talent and time at the disposal of the Association. I am still ready to offer more of my time, this time as the President of the Association”, he stated further, urging for increased awareness, participation and votes.
In the meantime, the Maritime First can now authoritatively report that in addition to Capt. Labinjo, other juggernauts also in the race for NISA Presidency include, Temisan Omatseye, Greg Ogbeifun and Paul Jegede.