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Aviation fuel: Airline operators allege hijack, worry over safety

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Aviation fuel: Airline operators allege hijack, worry over safety

Airline operators in Nigeria have alleged hijacked aviation fuel by supply chain of the Jet A1 fuel, thereby driving up the price through artificial scarcity.

The operators also expressed worry over the safety of airlines in Nigeria, adding that they were disturbed in the face of continuous hikes in the price of aviation fuel.

Also read: Nigerian airlines form an alliance for interline Collaboration

The operators said this during a hearing by the House of Representatives ad hoc committee investigating the scarcity of aviation fuel.

They said that operators were struggling to maintain their jets as fuel now took over 115 per cent of operating costs.

Mr Allen Onyema, the CEO of Air Peace, said that within two weeks, the price of aviation fuel moved from N190 per litre to N670 per litre.

Onyema said the operators would have shut down operations if not for the political season and to support the current administration that had been supportive of the sector.

He said that the operators could not survive the next 72 hours because they were indebted and risked takeover by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON).

Mr Ugbugo Ukoha, Executive Director, Distribution System for Storage and Retailing Infrastructure in the Nigeria Midstream and Downstream Regulatory Authority, however, claimed that the country had excess supply.

According to him, Nigeria has an excess supply of Aviation Turbine Kerosene (ATK); the regulatory authority is not sincere on the state of things in the sector.

He said that the country had 34 days of fuel supply, hence, the report of scarcity is false.

Onyema, while responding to the presentation by Ukoha, said he was surprised with the claim that fuel was in abundance.

He said that operators had been sourcing the fuel from marketers at an exorbitant price.

“To say that I am saddened by certain responses is playing it down. The product is not available, I am surprised that he, Ukoha, is saying there is sufficiency that will last for 34 days

He urged the House to intervene to make the price of ATK sell for a minimum of N200 per litre.

Rep. Idris Wase, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Reps who chaired the hearing, berated Ukoha,  accusing him of being used to blackmail the government in a political season.

He warned that no one would blackmail the government.

“As a politician, I want to tell you that I am concerned, we are moving into an election period, nobody should blackmail our government,” he said.

He noted that the surge in price was sequel to hoarding by marketers and negligence of the regulatory authorities to do their work.

Wase also blamed the Executive Vice Chairman of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), Babatunde Irukera, for not monitoring the activities of the ATK marketers.

The Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Musa Nuhu, said the hike in the cost of jet fuel made the NCAA consider grounding some airlines from operating to avoid air mishaps.

Mr Mele Kyari, Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said the request by the operators to reduce the price of ATK to N200 per litre would not be possible.

He said that the current landing price of the product was above N400 per litre, adding that unless the country wished to start paying subsidy on the product.

The committee, however, urged Ukoha to provide the committee with the list of all licenced marketers to meet with the committee on March 14.

 

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MWUN Floors Intel’s, As Court Orders Foreign Giant to Pay 599 Workers’ Gratuity

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MWUN Floors Intel's, As Court Orders Foreign Giant to Pay 599 Workers' Gratuity

In a significant triumph for the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), a court has ruled in favour of the union, ordering INTELS to pay extra gratuity to 599 workers who were affected by a redundancy exercise. 

The ruling comes after a prolonged legal battle, which began when INTELS initially paid redundancy extra gratuity to its 34 permanent staff but refused to negotiate with the union to pay the same amount to the contract staff.

According to a statement released by the union’s Head of Media, Comrade John Kennedy Ikemefuna, on Monday, May 20, 2024, the court ruled that INTELS and AMS must negotiate with the union and pay the extra gratuity to all 599 affected workers, just as they did with their permanent staff. 

The court also declared that the Industrial Arbitration Panel (IAP) was wrong to unilaterally determine the amount workers should be paid without negotiation, which led to the trade dispute.

This victory marks a significant milestone for the Maritime Workers Union, which has been fighting tirelessly for the rights of its members.

 The union has consistently demanded that INTELS negotiate with them to pay the extra gratuity to all affected workers, and the court’s ruling has vindicated their stance.

With this ruling, the union has secured a major win for the 599 workers who were initially denied their rightful entitlement. 

The union’s determination and perseverance have paid off, and they will continue to fight for the rights and welfare of their members.

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AKTORAS: Bonny Gas Transport Limited Charts Sustainable Course with Launch Of Eco-Friendly Vessel

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AKTORAS: Bonny Gas Transport Limited Charts Sustainable Course with Launch Of Eco-Friendly Vessel

… Nigeria berths state-of-the-art ship, equipped with cutting-edge technology that reduces emissions and increases efficiency

Bonny Gas Transport Limited (BGT), a subsidiary of Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG), has taken a significant step towards a sustainable future with the charter of a new eco-friendly vessel, AKTORAS. This state-of-the-art ship is equipped with cutting-edge technology that reduces emissions and increases efficiency, aligning with BGT’s commitment to decarbonization.

The vessel was officially launched at a ceremony at the Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries shipyard in South Korea, where Mrs Olu Verheijen, Special Adviser to the Nigerian President on Energy, christened the vessel as the Sponsor Lady and Godmother.

The event was graced by dignitaries, including Ambassador Ferdinard Nwonye, the Nigerian Head of Mission in South Korea; Dr. Philip Mshelbila, BGT’s Executive Vice President and NLNG’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer; and Mr. Andy Odeh, NLNG’s General Manager, External Relations and Sustainable Development.

Dr. Philip Mshelbila hailed the charter of AKTORAS as a transformative stride towards decarbonization and a sustainable future. “The charter of this newbuild modern tonnage to BGT, on a Bareboat Charter basis, represents a strategic move towards diversifying our shipping portfolio.

This vessel signifies a new era of greater efficiency and sustainability for BGT’s fleet. The enhanced fleet capacity will support NLNG as it continues to harness Nigeria’s abundant natural gas resources, reposition itself in the Energy Transition era, and prepare for the future, which includes the expansion of its production capacity in furtherance of the commitment to meet the growing demand for clean and sustainable energy solutions on a global scale.”

Mrs Olu Verheijen emphasized the vessel’s significance, stating, “This ceremony symbolizes the unwavering commitment of Bonny Gas Transport Limited and its parent company, Nigeria LNG Limited, to adapt and thrive in the ever-evolving global energy landscape. Their dedication to future-proofing their business resonates deeply with me, recognizing it as a crucial strategy to maintain relevance and competitiveness in the dynamic LNG market.”

The AKTORAS vessel is a 174,000 m3 capacity class LNG carrier, with a length of 299.6 meters, breadth (moulded) of 46.40 meters, and deadweight of 81,194 tons. It is equipped with MEGA propulsion systems that reduce emissions and increase efficiency, making it an eco-friendly addition to BGT’s fleet.

The vessel will be managed by NLNG Shipping and Marine Services Limited (NSML) and will play a crucial role in supporting NLNG’s expansion plans and commitment to meeting the growing demand for clean and sustainable energy solutions globally.

This development marks a significant milestone in BGT’s and NLNG’s relentless march towards a sustainable and low-carbon emission future, demonstrating their dedication to future-proofing their business and maintaining relevance and competitiveness in the dynamic LNG market. As the energy landscape continues to evolve, BGT and NLNG are poised to lead the charge towards a more sustainable future.

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IMO: NIMASA Celebrates Nigerian Women Stakeholders, to Mark Women In Maritime Day

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The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dayo Mobereola has commended the contributions of Nigerian women to the development of the maritime sector, even as the agency Director of Financial Services, Mrs. Olamide Odusanya thumbed up women’s pivotal roles in developmental sustainability.

The NIMASA Director General gave the commendation, during the 2024 commemoration of the International Day for Women in Maritime in Lagos, 

“Let me seize this opportunity to recognize and applaud the incredible achievements of women in maritime. From seafarers and ship captains to engineers”, the Director General, Dr. Dayo Mobereola who was represented by the Agency’s Executive Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, Jibril Abba, informed the audience, comprising the various women’s groups in the maritime industry.

L-R: Hon. Olaitan Williams, President of Ocean Ambassadors Foundation; Adaora Nwonu, WIMOWCA Nigeria ExCo; Nneka Obianyor, WIMOWCA Nigeria Secretary General; Mrs. Rollens MacFoy, President of WIMA-Nigeria; Barr. Oritsematosan Edodo-Emore, President of WIMOWCA Nigeria; Jibril Abba, Executive Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, representing the DG of NIMASA; Princess Margaret Inam of WILAT; Dr Odunayo Ani, President of WISTA Nigeria; Juliana Saka of Nigeria Shippers Council, Vivian Chimezie, DG of the Nigerian Chamber of Shipping; Obiageli Benjamin, Assistant Secretary of WIMA Nigeria; and Jennifer Eneh, DD Cabotage Registration NIMASA, cutting the cake during NIMASA’s celebration of the International Day for Women in Maritime at NIMASA Maritime House, Apapa, Lagos.

Speaking on the theme: “Safe Horizons: Women Shaping the Future of Maritime Safety” the DG told his happy audience which included the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA), Women in Maritime (WIMA), Women in Logistics and Transport (WILAT), and Women in Maritime West and Central Africa (WIMOWCA), among others, to stand firm, speak with one voice, because the agency would support their aspirations.

Dr. Mobereola emphasized that the Agency appreciates its contributions to the overall development of the Nigerian maritime industry.

“From seafarers and ship captains to engineers and port operators, as well as maritime professionals and trailblazers, women have played a pivotal role in shaping the maritime industry and driving innovation and progress”, the NIMASA Boss observed, praising their dedication and resilience.

“Their dedication, resilience, and expertise have enriched our industry and inspired a future generation of women to pursue careers in maritime”. He said.

L-R: Nneka Obianyor, Special Adviser (Technical) to the Director-General; Rakiya Lamai, Head of SERVICOM; Chris Amakulo, Director of Shipping Development; Gloria Anyasodo, Coordinator of the Western Zone; Jibril Abba, Executive Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, representing the Director-General of NIMASA; Dr. Odunayo Ani, Head of Internal Audit; Jide Owonubi, Head of Reform Coordination and Strategic Management; Navy Commander Salihu Ibrahim, representing the Maritime Guard Commander; and Olamide Odusanya, Director of Financial Services, were present during NIMASA’s commemoration of the International Day for Women in Maritime.

“To all the women in maritime: Your contributions are vital, your voices are heard, and your achievements inspire us all. Together, we can harness the nation’s blue economy to build a more sustainable and prosperous maritime industry that benefits us all. Thank you for your dedication, passion, and commitment to a more inclusive maritime community”. Mobereola added. 

Earlier in her presentation, Mrs Olamide Odusanya, the Director of Financial Services at NIMASA, appreciated the IMO for creating an inclusive and supportive environment to recognize women in maritime, in line with the provisions of Sustainable Development Goal 5, which is Gender Equality.

Her words:  “It is clear the pivotal role of women in the maritime industry. Closing the gender gap, which is SDG 5- Gender Equality, has been an internal quest of women folks since the Industrial Revolution, and one significant achievement has been made; we still have a long way towards achieving relative parity.

President of WIMOWCA, Oritsematosan Edodo-Emore (4th from right), is flanked by other members after their inauguration during NIMASA’s commemoration of the International Day for Women in Maritime, which recently took place in Lagos.

A paper presented by Mrs. Gloria Anyasodo on “Emerging Trends: Shaping the Future of Maritime Safety and Opportunities for Women” emphasized that safety transcends gender. Therefore, women must cultivate competence through proper education, expertise, and mutual support to uplift one another.

Dr. Odunayo Ani the President of the Women International Shipping and Trading Association (WISTA) Nigeria,  Mrs Rollens MacFoy, President of African Women in Maritime, Nigeria chapter, Princess Margaret Inam of Women in Logistics and Transport (WiLAT), Barrister Oritsematosan Edodo-Emore the National President of Women in Maritime of West and Central Africa (WIMOWCA) and Hon. Olaitan Williams, President Ocean Ambassadors Foundation all delivered goodwill messages at the event.

The event culminated with the official inauguration of the WIMOWCA Nigeria chapter by the DG NIMASA.

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