By Ajibola Abayomi,
July 25, 2018.
The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has taken stern measures in its bid to ensure total compliance with the provisions of the International Ships and Ports Facility Security (ISPS) code.
In what appeared like taking the bull by the horn the agency has sanctioned three erring facilities namely; Heyden Petroleum Jetty, Index Petroleum Oil Jetty, Waziri Jetty operated by Hemsmor Nigeria Limited, NIPCO in Lagos, while the Pinnacle Oil and Gas Petroleum, Warri, Delta State for non compliance to the ISPS code.
Speaking during the exercise which lasted for about three hours, the Head of the ISPS Code Unit of the Agency, Captain Elei Green Igbogi noted that the affected jetties were given adequate notice to correct the anomalies identified, but they did not, hence the Agency has no other option, but to seal the facilities until they implement the minimum ISPS Code standards.
He stated further that the sealed facilities have failed to implement physical and operational security measures in their premises which pose a great danger to the ships that call at their jetties and their facilities. In addition to this, they have also failed to pay fines imposed on them.
Captain Igbogi noted that the Agency worked with the Recognised Security Organisation (RSO) and identified the physical and operational gaps in the facilities and they were duly advised to take corrective measures as stated in part VIII (3) of the ISPS Code regulations.
“The Dr. Dakuku Peterside led Management of NIMASA is committed to ensuring strict compliance to the provisions of the ISPS Code with the aim of achieving 100 per cent implementation so that vessels calling at our ports can be assured of safety. And to achieve this, every segment of the sector must embrace international best practices in its day to day activities. When all facilities are compliant it is for the good of all; as security is very crucial in realizing a robust maritime sector” Capt. Green said.
It would be that the Agency was appointed as the Designated Authority (DA) for ISPS Code implementation in Nigeria in 2013 and has since raised the bar from barely 13 per cent to over 90 per cent in terms of implementation and compliance.
Also part VIII of the ISPS Code implementation regulations 2014 gives the Agency the powers to impose fines, withdraw maritime services and also to close down any erring facility that consistently violates the rules and regulations.