The Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has suggested a legal framework that prescribes stiff sanctions, vigilant military-led patrols and better intelligence gathering to tackle sea piracy.
The Director-General of NIMASA, Dr Dakuku Peterside, made the call at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on his way to Singapore for a conference.
According to a statement issued by the Head of Public Relations of NIMASA, Hajia Lami Tumaka, Peterside said that tackling rising cases of piracy in the Gulf of Guinea required a multi-stakeholder approach.
He said that the activities of pirates stifled shipping and by extension, commerce, which was a major driver of global economy.
Peterside said that all avenues would be explored to keep Nigeria’s waterways safe for ships plying them.
He noted that this required wider consultation.
The director-general said that NIMASA under his leadership was championing a number of initiatives aimed at achieving zero pirate activities in Nigerian waters.
He decried the inclusion of Nigeria among the top three countries where pirate activities occurred.
The director-general said that with the new impetus, the trend would be reversed in no distant time.
He noted that his administration was committed to repositioning NIMASA to accomplish its core mandate of ensuring safe, secure shipping and a cleaner marine environment.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the director-general is in Singapore on invitation of the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore.
Peterside is expected to address a forum of maritime regulators and experts at this year’s Singapore Maritime Week on “Indispensable Shipping: Meeting the Regulatory Requirements’’.