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MD NPA advises Pilotage Board members to see appointment as call to national duty

The Honourable Minister of Transportation, Rt.
Hon. Rotimi Amaechi (standing 5th from left) with the members of the
pilotage boards after their inauguration in Abuja 

The Managing Director, Nigerian Ports
Authority (NPA) Hadiza Bala Usman, has charged members of the newly inaugurated
pilotage boards to see their appointments as a “call to serve the nation in the
national interest.”

She therefore implored the appointees to use
their high professional skills and knowledge to improve pilotage services in
the nation’s seaports within the areas of their jurisdictions.

The Director, Maritime Services of Federal
Ministry of Transportation, Alhaji Sani Galadanchi (standing 7th
from left), NPA Executive Director, Marine and Operations, Dr. Sokonte Davies
(standing 6th from left) with the members of the pilotage boards
after their inauguration in Abuja

The Pilotage Boards inaugurated were those of
Lagos, Warri, Bonny / Port Harcourt and Calabar Port pilotage districts, as
provided for by the Port Act, with a life span of three years.

While appreciating the appointees for
accepting to serve on the boards, the Managing Director reiterated that their
functions and responsibilities, as provided for in the Port Act, are crucial to
the overall operation of the nation’s seaports in ensuring navigational safety
and protection of the marine environment.

Speaking through the Executive Director,
Marine and Operations of the Authority, Dr. Sokonte Davies, after the
inauguration of the board by the Honourable Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon.
Rotimi Amaechi, Hadiza asserted that the Authority would provide all the necessary
support and enabling environment members of the boards will require to succeed
in their assignments.

She assured members of the boards that their
recommendations and submissions shall always guide the Management in ensuring
navigational safety of the nations water channels in accordance with
international best practice.

Earlier while inaugurating the board, the
Minister of Transportation, represented by the Director of Maritime Services,
Alhaji Sani Galadanchi had said the members of the boards were carefully
selected on the basis of their professional qualifications and requisite
experience in the nation’s maritime industry, adding that much was expected
from them.

The Minister who admitted that the task before
the members of the board is not an easy one, expressed optimism. “But we trust
that you will bring to bare your wealth of experience and expertise to
discharge your duties as provided under the Port Act,” he added.

Recalling that the tenure of the last Pilotage
Board elapsed in 2016, the Minister reasoned that it could be imagined that
some of its responsibilities may have suffered lack of attention, expressing
the hope that with their inauguration, quick steps will be taken to address all
such matters.

The Minister reminded the Board members of
their functions to include the establishment of entry requirement for obtaining
certificate or license in order to perform pilotage services, enforcement of
the maintenance of developed standards and specification.

Responding on behalf of other members of the
pilotage boards, Capt. Adewale Ishola pledged the determination of the Board to
live up to the expectations of the Authority in the discharge of its functions in accordance with the provisions of the Port Act.

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