*Dr. Dakuku Peterside
18 September 2018, Sweetcrude, Lagos — The Director General of Nigerian Maritime Safety and Administrative Agency, NIMASA, has stressed the importance of effective continental collaboration for the development of the maritime industry in Africa.
Peterside, who doubles as the chairman of the Association of African Maritime Administrations, AAMA, stated this as he arrived Sharm El Sheik, Egypt for the 4th AAMA conference.
Participants from 38 African countries will be joined by maritime stakeholders from Singapore, Jamaica, Malaysia and the United Kingdom amongst others to deliberate on how to grow the maritime industry on the continent.
Dakuku noted that the role of African maritime administration in building human and infrastructural capacities, combating piracy and other maritime crimes as well as promoting regional initiatives for sustainable exploitation of maritime resources, will be part of the issues that will be deliberated on during the five-day with the theme, “Protecting The African Marine Environment To Support Sustainable Development”.
According to the AAMA chairman, “ Africa is the market yet to be unveiled. The maritime sector of Africa deserves its rightful place because if you look at the cargo generated from the continent and the cargo that heads to Africa, you will know that the African maritime sector has come of age and there is the need for us to come as a block to negotiate issues of development of our sector when it comes to international maritime politics”
Following the commencement of the AAMA conference, the International Maritime Organization, IMO, and the African Union have affirmed their readiness to support AAMA in their quest to combat security challenges, and build human capacity to implement, monitor and enforce international instruments.
The chief executive of Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, Andrew Tan, who is already in Egypt, commended the Dakuku-led executive members of AAMA for engaging other maritime administrations across the globe in their quest to develop maritime Africa.
“We are delighted to share knowledge with African maritime leaders,” he said, adding: “We are ready to partner AAMA in its quest to grow the African maritime sector which we know will rub off on the industry in totality”.
AAMA members at the 3rd AAMA conference, with the theme, “Sustainable use of Africa’s oceans and seas, agreed to develop and adopt Near-Coastal Trading, Certification and Competency Code for mutual recognition of certificates that will reduce and eliminate contentions by Port State Control inspectors.
Members were also encouraged to re-enforce regional cooperation and coordination, enhance information sharing and regulatory governance among members to combat the menace of piracy and other maritime crimes while maintaining a balance between security and the facilitation of global trade.
Dr Peterside was elected chairman of AAMA at the conference, which held in Abuja in 2017. Also elected with him was an 11-member executive committee comprising of representatives of Central Africa (Cameroon and Cape Verde), West Africa (Cote D’Ivoire and Ghana), East Africa (Tanzania and Comoros), Southern Africa (Mozambique and South Africa), North Africa (Egypt and Sudan) and Uganda representing land-locked countries.