Lack of Vessels, Logistics Debars seafarers from Gainful Employment

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Lack of Major Logistics In the Maritime Academy of Nigerian,(MAN) has been fingered as the main reasons graduate Cadets stay long without meaningful employment. Bemoaning this hindrance the Rector of MAN, Mr. Joshua Okpo told news men in Oron that it was an absurdity for seafarers to go through training as stipulated by the institution without experiencing practical sessions in ocean going vessels Okpo said the issue of training ship has been long over stretched, but the cheering news is that solution is not farfetched. He thus stated the effort made by the training institution, in conjunction with MRS and EU owned vessels to engage cadets of MAN to serve on their vessels. He also went ahead to reveal to pressmen that the President of Indigenous Ship Owners Association of Nigeria (ISAN) and Chairman of the sub committee, Marine local content on cabotage, Chief Isaac Jolapamo has seen and is taking steps for t MAN to get its own vessel. According to Okpo, a committee has been set up to look into the utilization of a training vessel headed by Mr. Akinsoji, recommended two l models. The first will be to access an interest free loan from Cabotage vessel Finance Fund (CVFF) which he said will be re-paid through deductions from their statutory allocations from NIMASA under an agreed percentage. Under this model, Okpo continued, the ship will be used for training and commercial purposes, to enable the institution earn some money between the First 5-6 years to offset the loans. The second model emphasized, was that the ship will be purely for training and nothing else. However, the first model has been sent to Shonekan Commission for ratification and possible approval. Other areas where the institution needs help include security, telecommunications, and more funding. He however hailed the commissioning of Onitsha River port commissioning, by President, Goodluck Jonathan. Okpo believes that Onitsha being a commercial nerve in the country will get a boost in business and trade due to this new development. The incidents of road mishaps and other damages due to the heavy traffic on Nigerian highways will be a thing of the past. He stated further that job opportunities will be on the increase as young men and women in the eastern axis and other part of the country will be gainful employed as a derivative of the newly commissioned port.