The Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Bashir Yusuf Jamoh, has asked the states in the northern part of the country to consider exploring their maritime resources, especially those in the rivers and inland waters.
Jamoh gave the charge weekend while speaking with journalists in Kaduna on the sidelines of his daughter’s wedding ceremony.
The NIMASA Director-General, who is an indigene of Kaduna State and is believed to be eyeing the governorship seat in the state ahead of the 2023 general election, also charged journalists in the region to educate the people about the potentials of the maritime industry.
He said, “Nigeria is Nigeria regardless of where we come from but what is disturbing me is that the north is lagging behind in the issue of the maritime industry. I made an attempt to get a media man from the northwest, northeast and from north central that can be reporting maritime. I think we have reached an advanced stage signing that agreement so that we can continue to disseminate information about maritime in the northern part of the country.”
While acknowledging that the northern part of the country does not have access to the ocean, he said inland waterway resources abound in the north. These resources, he said, can also be harnessed to the benefit of the indigenes.
“Majority of people do believe that since we don’t have a sea, we don’t have maritime. That is not correct. If you go to Egypt, it is artificial lake they use. You see this River Kaduna; if we dredge it, we would make a better use of it. It is as good as sea. Whatever resources you can have in our sea, you can have it there. The maritime assets you can have in our sea, you have it here. So I begin to wonder why all these years, we never try to look at the River Kaduna beyond what the River Kaduna should provide,” he said.