….Insinuations of rift is a lie- Labinjo
Peace focused Nigerian Indigenous Ship-owners Association (NISA) may soon suffer a set back, as election contestants begin vote-catching, but divisive campaigns of calumny and acrimony meant to de-market opponents.
Subsequently, the association may soon be polarized into three factions, comprising of tanker operators, dry or general cargo vessel operator and tug boats/off shore, crew boat operators.
Already, a sub-group was indicated to have gloated the idea that since the outgoing NISA Chairman, Chief Isaac Jolapamo is a tanker operator; whoever must succeed him, must not be a tanker operator, but must be either from the shore, tug crew vessel category or the general cargo sub-group.
An industry watcher Anthony Emerrdi said he had looked at the body, being a professional one with lot of respects, until the present stage, when he discovered that even the body with its high-classic intelligent membership, may also not be immune to the campaigns based on issues, rather than personality.
When the view of the NISA elections organizing body ( ASECO) Chairman, Capt. Niyi Adeyemo was sought, he said ASECO would not interfere with language they use.
“The ASECO will not interfere with the language they use. The bottom line is that people are free to use any language they choose; whether gutter language or street language, what matters is that the ideals of democracy is followed to the letter”, he said, explaining that once the rules of the game, bothering on a totally free and fair voting exercise, was obeyed, the body would be satisfied.
Similarly, when the Maritime First secured the attention of one of the contestants, Capt. Dada Labinjo, he described the use of what he also agreed appeared like divisive strategy, even if such might help, to capture floaters votes.
“The association is for the entire ship owners” he explained, stressing that it would not matter whether it is about an off-shore operators or tanker vessels, because all have made significant investments in the industry.
“There is no division at all.
“We are of the same family and membership.
This election is not about whether you are operating on the oil tanker, general cargo or off-shore sub-section. It is all about who is ready to serve the association; who is ready to protect and advance the over-all interest of the association. It is about who is ready to serve the association in genuine honesty”, he concluded, stressing that if all those in tanker operators are willing to do this, he would still see nothing wrong, in their being elected to office.
Investigation shows that there were now, more foreign vessel owners in the off-shore because of the influence of the International Oil Companies (IOC), and also because of their preference for foreigners. Where as, in the tanker operating section, Nigerians are more, because of the predominant petroleum product litre trade, in Nigeria.
it is not unlikely that out of the three running for the Presidential seat, Mr. Temisan Omatseye is into tankers, Greg Ogbeifun in off-shore supports while Labinjo is in both the tankers and off shore operations.