From Anthony Nwachukwu, Lagos
Members of the newly inaugurated pilotage boards across the country have been enjoined to deploy their “high professional skills and knowledge” in improving improve pilotage services in the nation’s seaports within their jurisdictions, in the overriding interest of the nation.
Giving the charge during the inauguration of the boards for Lagos, Warri, Bonny/Port Harcourt and Calabar Port pilotage districts, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, assured that the agency would back them with the necessary support and enabling environment.
Usman, who was represented by the NPA Executive Director, Marine and Operations, Dr. Sokonte Davies, stressed that the functions and responsibilities of members of the boards, as provided by the Port Act, were crucial to the overall operation of the seaports in ensuring navigational safety and protection of the marine environment.
She further assured that their recommendations and submissions would always guide the NPA management in ensuring navigational safety on the nation’s water channels, in accordance with international best practice, according to a statement by the Assistant General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications, Isah Suwaid.
Earlier, the NPA Director of Maritime Services, Sani Galadanchi, who represented the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, had disclosed that members of the boards were selected based on their professional qualifications and requisite experience in the maritime industry, adding that much was expected from them.
According to the minister, the task before them is enormous, “but we trust that you will bring to bear your wealth of experience and expertise in the discharge of your duties as provided under the Port Act.”