By Okezie Nnadi
The Nigerian Maritime Administration and SafetyAgency, NIMASA and the
Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NiMet, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) setting out areas of collaboration in weather forecasting and climate research.
Director General NIMASA, Dr Bashir Jamoh and his counterpart from NiMet, Prof Mansur Bako Matazu signed on behalf of both Agencies of government.
The MoU is designed as a framework for NiMet to provide meteorological services for NIMASA to improve the welfare of Seafarers and Safety of navigation of vessels in Nigerian territorial waters in line with recommendations of the International Maritime Organization.
Speaking shortly after the signing ceremony, NIMASA Director General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh enthused that the forecast for maritime safety and security through NiMet from NIMASA, would not only improve safety of navigation in Nigerian waters, but will greatly enhance the confidence of the international community in the Nigerian maritime sector.
According to him, “The objective of the MoU between NIMASA and NiMet is to enhance the capacity of both Agencies with a view to providing relevant meteorological services to seafarers and ocean going vessels that will allow sustainable development of the marine environment and delivery of products and services to the various sectors related to maritime safety, security, marine environment protection and other maritime activities.”
“it is clear that the collaboration between NIMASA and NiMet will help the maritime sector fill the gaps earlier identified by the International Maritime Organization during it’s last audit of the country’s maritime space”,He said.
Responding, the Director-General of NiMet, Prof Mansur Bako Matazu, assured that the maritime industry would soon benefit from the partnership in the same way that the aviation sector has been benefiting from NiMet’s services. “Recently, Nimet invested over 720 million naira in equipment for maritime services. We are fully ready to make our services count in the maritime sector and we are sure that the maritime community globally is proud of this Nigerian initiative”. He said.
As part of the MoU, NIMASA undertakes to provide the mechanism for the dissemination of marine meteorological information to seafarers; make provision for calibration, consultancy, and certification of instruments and equipment as well as to ensure periodic training of staff engaged in meteorological observation.