Connect with us


PDP crisis: S/South Gov to replace Muazu



An outgoing governor from the South-south is being tipped to take over as national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the plot to unseat the incumbent, Alhaji Adamu Mu’azu, thickens. Mu’azu is being targeted by many party faithful for the party’s disastrous outing in the recent elections, its worst since it swept into power in 1999.

The ‘Mu’azu must- go’  campaign is being spearheaded  by chieftains  of the party including governors in the South-south and South-east who  see the two zones as the new power base of the party and which must now be in the PDP’s driver’s seat with a view to  repositioning the party ahead of the 2019 elections.

More party members are being recruited to join the campaign which sources said may terminate Mu’azu’s leadership as early as May 29, the same day President Goodluck Jonathan will be handing over power to General Muhammadu Buhari.

The PDP chairman is from Bauchi in the Northeast geo-political zone. His critics blame him for the inability of the party to do well in the north in particular and the nation in general in the elections. The Nation gathered that the plot to move against him came about at a meeting of all the PDP governors, governors- elect, Senators, Senators- elect, Reps and Reps-elect last week.

The meeting was said to have x-rayed the party’s performance in each of the six geo-political zones. According to sources, the meeting was characterised by accusations and counter accusations of disloyalty, betrayal and anti-party activities amongst chieftains, especially in the northern zones.

Soon after the Abuja meeting, one of the Southsouth governors openly blamed PDP’s loss at the federal level on what he described as indiscipline and disloyalty by some party members. He spoke at the inauguration of a special committee to examine the performance and conduct of the PDP leaders during the polls. The governor who warned that dire consequences awaited any member found to be involved in anti-party activities, emphasised the importance of party discipline and loyalty towards achieving success in any political contest.

“From proceeding at the meeting, it was obvious that the party urgently needs a new direction. For this to happen, we must get new leadership immediately. And there is no pretending that the leadership can no longer remain in the north following its woeful performance in that region,” a party source told The Nation.

“We cannot be led by people whose commitment to the party is now questionable. Those who have stakes in the party must take charge and rescue the party at this crucial stage. This is the idea behind the resolve to bring the chairmanship back to the south. But I am not aware that a particular is mentioned to occupy the seat,” the source, a defeated Senatorial candidate who was at the meeting added.

It was also gathered that at the end of the Abuja post-mortem, PDP governors from the southern states met with some prominent party leaders including Senator Pius Anyim and Chief E.K Clark and urged them to support the replacement of Muazu with a respected Southsouth Governor before May 29.

“The presidency has bought into the idea and Muazu’s days in office may be numbered. Prominent party leaders like E.K Clark and others have endorsed the candidature of the outgoing Governor who has not been elected or appointed into any public office for now,” another source said. “It is a popular opinion amongst us that the leadership of the party should return to the south now that a northerner is the next president of the country,” another source added.

The Nation learnt that a repeat of the meeting has been scheduled for this week. It is expected that the anti-Muazu governors will move against the PDP boss anytime after the said meeting.”

The Nation


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. 

Continue Reading


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.

Continue Reading


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

Continue Reading

Editor’s Pick