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APC LEADS IN Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Borno others



As protesters demand cancellation of PDP results in Rivers, Akwa Ibom

Akinwumi Ambode of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has been declared the Governor-elect of Lagos State, defeating the Peoples Democratic Party candidate, Mr. Joni Agbaje in a keenly contested election.

Ambode confirmed that Agbaje personally called him at 6:50 pm on Sunday, to congratulate him and also prayed for him.

In Oyo State, the APC candidate candidates a current Governor of the State, Senator Isiaka Ajimobi was re-elected for another four-year tenure, after polling over 38 percent of votes cast; and defeating his closest rivals, former Governors Rashid Ladoja who polled over 28 percent of the votes and Chief Christopher Akala who came third with more than 15 percent votes.

Though the APC,  Rivers State has petitioned the INEC chairman, Prof Athairu Jega, demanding the cancellation of the Rivers State results, most respondents posited that nothing except the law courts would guarantee a final settlement.

The APC also, did not only have its Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun re-elected, but also won 17 out of the 26 Assembly seats in the Ogun State, leaving the PDP  with four seats while two seats remained awaited.

Amosun, the APC flag-bearer garnered in 306,988 votes while his PDP counterpart, Gboyega Nasiru Isiaka GNI, polled 201,440.

Chief Olusegun Osoba’s SDP, set up about a year ago, after the high chief  defected from the APC failed to win a single assembly seat.

In Niger State, the released results also showed that the APC governorship candidate, Alhaji Abubakar Bello, coasted to victory, polling 593,702 votes to defeat Alhaji Umar Nasko of the PDP, who got 239,772 votes. 

The APC governorship candidate won in 23 of the 25 local government areas in the state.

The APC candidate in Sokoto State,, Aminu Tambuwal, similarly braced the tape ahead of other contestants, beating them in the local government areas released so far by the INEC.

Also in Borno State, the APC candidate and current governor, Kashim Shettima, was re-elected, gathering over 610,352 votes, to beat his PDP rival, Gambo Lawan, who scored over 34,005. The result from Bama, was however still being put together.

Protesters have however hit the streets, crying foul play as a People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Mr. Udom Emmanuel was declared winner in the Akwa Ibom governorship poll with 996,071 votes. 

The protesters insist on result cancellation, stressing that they could not understand how the PDP beat the All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate’s Umana Okon Umana who got 89,865 votes.

The PDP may also have clinched the governorship seat in River State, as the PDP flag bearer, Nyesom Wike shoots ahead by a very wide margin, over and above the candidate of the APC, Mr Dakuku Peterside.

The PDP candidate in Enugu State. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, however won the governorship election in the State, after posting a lead in 15 out of the 17 local governments areas already released by INEC. 

The INEC has however declared as inconclusive, the governorship elections in Imo state.  It has also announced that a new date is to be fixed for all the local governments were elections were cancelled.

The returning officer, Prof. Ayo Ibidapo-Obe while declaring the results inconclusive, noted that the decision was necessary to ensure that nobody was disenfranchised under the new democratic dispensation.

According to him, the potential voters in the affected areas exceeded 144,000,  which is more than the difference between the two major contenders, the APC and the PDP.

Before the election was declared inconclusive, the incumbent Governor and candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Owelle Rochas Okorocha was leading in 20 local governments while the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, won in seven local governments in the state.



WAIVER CESSATION: Igbokwe urges NIMASA to evolve stronger collaboration with Ships owners



…Stresses the need for timely disbursement of N44.6billion CVFF***

Highly revered Nigerian Maritime Lawyer, and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mike Igbokwe has urged the Nigeria Maritime Administration and safety Agency (NIMASA) to partner with ship owners and relevant association in the industry to evolving a more vibrant merchant shipping and cabotage trade regime.

Igbokwe gave the counsel during his paper presentation at the just concluded two-day stakeholders’ meeting on Cabotage waiver restrictions, organized by NIMASA.

“NIMASA and shipowners should develop merchant shipping including cabotage trade. A good start is to partner with the relevant associations in this field, such as the Nigeria Indigenous Shipowners Association (NISA), Shipowners Association of Nigeria (SOAN), Oil Trade Group & Maritime Trade Group of the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA).

“A cursory look at their vision, mission and objectives, show that they are willing to improve the maritime sector, not just for their members but for stakeholders in the maritime economy and the country”.

Adding that it is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a through briefing and regular consultation with ships owners, in other to have insight on the challenges facing the ship owners.

“It is of utmost importance for NIMASA to have a thorough briefing and regular consultations with shipowners, to receive insight on the challenges they face, and how the Agency can assist in solving them and encouraging them to invest and participate in the maritime sector, for its development. 

“NIMASA should see them as partners in progress because, if they do not invest in buying ships and registering them in Nigeria, there would be no Nigerian-owned ships in its Register and NIMASA would be unable to discharge its main objective.

The Maritime lawyer also urged NIMASA  to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (CVFF)that currently stands at about N44.6 billion.

“Lest it be forgotten, what is on the lips of almost every shipowner, is the need to disburse the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (the CVFF’), which was established by the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act, 2003. It was established to promote the development of indigenous ship acquisition capacity, by providing financial assistance to Nigerian citizens and shipping companies wholly owned by Nigerian operating in the domestic coastal shipping, to purchase and maintain vessels and build shipping capacity. 

“Research shows that this fund has grown to about N44.6billion; and that due to its non-disbursement, financial institutions have repossessed some vessels, resulting in a 43% reduction of the number of operational indigenous shipping companies in Nigeria, in the past few years. 

“Without beating around the bush, to promote indigenous maritime development, prompt action must be taken by NIMASA to commence the disbursement of this Fund to qualified shipowners pursuant to the extant Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund (“CVFF”) Regulations.

Mike Igbokwe (SAN)

“Indeed, as part of its statutory functions, NIMASA is to enforce and administer the provisions of the Cabotage Act 2003 and develop and implement policies and programmes which will facilitate the growth of local capacity in ownership, manning and construction of ships and other maritime infrastructure. Disbursing the CVFF is one of the ways NIMASA can fulfill this mandate.

“To assist in this task, there must be collaboration between NIMASA, financial institutions, the Minister of Transportation, as contained in the CVFF Regulations that are yet to be implemented”, the legal guru highlighted further. 

He urged the agency to create the right environment for its stakeholders to build on and engender the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders.

“Lastly, which is the main reason why we are all here, cessation of ministerial waivers on some cabotage requirements, which I believe is worth applause in favour of NIMASA. 

“This is because it appears that the readiness to obtain/grant waivers had made some of the vessels and their owners engaged in cabotage trade, to become complacent and indifferent in quickly ensuring that they updated their capacities, so as not to require the waivers. 

“The cessation of waivers is a way of forcing the relevant stakeholders of the maritime sector, to find workable solutions within, for maritime development and fill the gaps in the local capacities in 100% Nigerian crewing, ship ownership, and ship building, that had necessitated the existence of the waivers since about 15 years ago, when the Cabotage Act came into being. 

“However, NIMASA must ensure that the right environment is provided for its stakeholders to build and possess the needed capacities to fill the gaps; and ensure that steps are being taken to solve the challenges being faced by stakeholders. Or better still, that they are solved within the next 5 years of its intention to stop granting waivers”, he further explained. 

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Breaking News: The Funeral Rites of Matriarch C. Ogbeifun is Live



The Burial Ceremony of Engr. Greg Ogbeifun’s mother is live. Watch on the website: and on Youtube: Maritimefirst Newspaper.

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Wind Farm Vessel Collision Leaves 15 Injured



…As Valles Steamship Orders 112,000 dwt Tanker from South Korea***

A wind farm supply vessel and a cargo ship collided in the Baltic Sea on Tuesday leaving 15 injured.

The Cyprus-flagged 80-meter general cargo ship Raba collided with Denmark-flagged 31-meter wind farm supply vessel World Bora near Rügen Island, about three nautical miles off the coast of Hamburg. 

Many of those injured were service engineers on the wind farm vessel, and 10 were seriously hurt. 

They were headed to Iberdrola’s 350MW Wikinger wind farm. Nine of the people on board the World Bora were employees of Siemens Gamesa, two were employees of Iberdrola and four were crew.

The cause of the incident is not yet known, and no pollution has been reported.

After the collision, the two ships were able to proceed to Rügen under their own power, and the injured were then taken to hospital. 

Lifeboat crews from the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service tended to them prior to their transport to hospital via ambulance and helicopter.

“Iberdrola wishes to thank the rescue services for their diligence and professionalism,” the company said in a statement.

In the meantime, the Hong Kong-based shipowner Valles Steamship has ordered a new 112,000 dwt crude oil tanker from South Korea’s Sumitomo Heavy Industries Marine & Engineering.

Sumitomo is to deliver the Aframax to Valles Steamship by the end of 2020, according to data provided by Asiasis.

The newbuild Aframax will join seven other Aframaxes in Valles Steamship’s fleet. Other ships operated by the company include Panamax bulkers and medium and long range product tankers.

The company’s most-recently delivered unit is the 114,426 dwt Aframax tanker Seagalaxy. The naming and delivery of the tanker took place in February 2019, at Namura Shipbuilding’s yard in Japan.

Maritime Executive with additional report from World Maritime News

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