Former strongman of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside on Tuesday handed over the leadership of the Agency to newly appointed Director-General, Dr. Bashir Yusuf Jamoh, despite initial protests, both real and concocted.
The brief but symbolic ceremony which took place at the NIMASA Corporate Headquarters, Apapa Lagos subsequently saw Jamoh resumed duty as 6th DG of the maritime regulatory Agency since the merger of National Maritime Authority with Joint Maritime Labour Industrial Council (JOMALIC) to form NIMASA. Dr. Dakuku whose four-year term ended March 10, 2020, assumed office on March 10, 2016.
“Perhaps, this is the last time I will sit in this position to speak to you all. It is a privilege I do not take lightly”, Dr. Dakuku Peterside stated.
“I thank God that after 4 years I am here hale and hearty to bid you all farewell and stand up for the great dreams of our country in the maritime sector.
“You all know whether we delivered or not. History and posterity will judge our actions.
“We got on the saddle at a time NIMASA and the industry were at its lowest ebb. There were challenges across all levels of the maritime industry from safety, security, maritime labour relations to structural and cultural issues.
“My colleagues and I knew we had a task; to restore the dignity of the Agency, get it to work for Nigerians, for the maritime industry and put her back on the path of international respect. We considered the bigger picture and long term need for the industry before committing to our course of actions. We set to work with a broad reform agenda in 2016 to reposition and restructure NIMASA under five pillars, namely: Survey, Inspection and Certification Transformation Programme; Environment, Security, Emergency Search and Rescue Transformation Initiative; Digital Strategy Reforms; Capacity Building and Promotional Initiatives; and Structural and Cultural Reforms.
“I met a lot of stakeholders, some with great ideas and others ready to critique every single move we made.
“The vibrant maritime media kept us on our toes throughout. We at no time said we were infallible but their critical scrutiny is one of our greatest assets”, Dakuku stated further, noting that under his watch, the Agency developed an integrated roadmap for the reform and repositioning of the Nigerian Ship Registration Office.
“Our scorecards are there. I am happy today that though my four years tenure as Director-General, NIMASA has come to an end, Mr. President, Commander-in-Chief has appointed one of our own as the new Director-General/CEO NIMASA”, he concluded.
An unconfirmed report said Dakuku failed to secure a second term ticket because the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi refused to represent his name to Mr. President, for reappointment. But anyone who saw Amaechi defend Dakuku before the AIT television crew may take the report with a pinch of the salt.
Another version of the report said the system had deliberately positioned Jamoh as the unbeatable candidate, with far superior credentials and intimidating knowhow, thereby making other competitors appear like minions, in the event that merit would be the sole yardstick.
Consequently, Jamoh, who is the immediate past Executive Director, Finance and Administration, at the Agency, actually took over, lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for believing in merit, continuity and expertise in making appointments.
“First and foremost I want to appreciate President Muhammadu Buhari and his team for finding me worthy of this appointment. It simply shows the President believes in continuity and the need to ensure that technocrats are given opportunities to serve under his leadership,” he stated.
Jamoh assured stakeholders of his unwavering dedication to the progress of the industry, adding that the maritime sector offers a major platform for economic development.
He promised to build on the successes achieved by the outgoing Executive Management, which he had been part of in the past four years.
Jamoh, who is currently President of the Chartered Institute of Transport Administration of Nigeria (CIOTA), holds a PhD from the University of Port Harcourt, specialising in Logistics and Transport Management. He also has a Master’s Degree in Management from Korea Maritime and Ocean University, Post Graduate Diploma in Management Sciences from Bayero University Kano, and a Diploma in Accounting from Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.
The author of the maritime reference book, “Harnessing Nigeria’s Maritime Assets; past, present and future,” Jamoh is well-grounded in the maritime industry with over 32 years of both professional and technical experience in the sector and has an exceptionally close working relationship with stakeholders in the industry.
He was appointed alongside Rt. Hon Victor Onyekachi Ochei, who replaced Malam Ahmed Gambo as Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services; Shehu Ahmed, who replaced Engr. Rotimi Fashakin as Executive Director, Operations; and Chudi Ofodile, who took over from Jamoh as Executive Director, Finance and Administration. NIMASA also got a new board, with Hon. Asita Honourable the Agency’s Board Chairman.
Ochei is an Engineer and Lawyer. He was a 2019 All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant in Delta State. Ochei was elected Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly’s 5thAssembly in 2011, a position he held till 2015.
Ochei also holds a Master’s degree in corporate governance from the Leads Metropolitan University (United Kingdom) as well as Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Benin.
Offodile is a Lawyer, author and politician. He was first elected into the House of Representatives in 1999 to represent Awka North/South Federal Constituency of Anambra State and was re-elected in 2003. Upon his re-election in 2003, Offodile was appointed chairman of the Public Petitions Committee. He graduated from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) with LLB (Hons) 1987, attended the Nigerian Law School in 1988 and obtained a post-graduate Diploma in Business Administration from UNN in 1994.
Ahmed holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and Master’s in Accounting from the South-eastern University in Washington D.C, U.S.A. He is a former Deputy Director in the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC). Ahmed joined the service of the corporation in 1993 as a senior Manager, having transferred his service from the New Nigeria Development Corporation (NNDC), where he worked from 1985-1993.
As Dakuku Peterside bows out, stakeholders now anxiously wait to see what the new ‘Sheriff’, Dr. Bashir Jamoh would do in terms of the ongoing policy on 5 year Cabotage Waiver Cessation Plan; and the proposed domestication of Six IMO Conventions and review of both the Merchant Shipping Act 2007 and NIMASA Act 2007, already at an advanced stages.
Concretely, they are also particularly anxious to know the dexterity of vision the new Director-General is bringing to the Agency’s integrated roadmap, for the reform and repositioning of the Nigerian Ship Registration Office!