The Federal Government has said that it will overhaul the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency in order to bring about effective performance in the organisation.
The government also stated that the Abuja-Kaduna rail project would be officially inaugurated on July 26, 2016.
The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, disclosed this when he received the Ministerial Committee on NIMASA for Restructuring and Effective Performance led by the agency’s Director-General, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, at the headquarters of the ministry in Abuja.
Amaechi said, “One of the reasons why I set up the committee was my visit to NIMASA. I asked a question, what does NIMASA do? They had what they call ‘Search and Rescue Centre,’ they also had what they call ‘Search and Rescue Clinic.’
“If you go there, even when I asked the lady doctor who was there, I said do you work here? She said yes, and I asked again, ‘do you like this place?’ She said no. Now, all the billions we hear, may be its right, may be its wrong, that’s what I need to know when the auditor goes round.
“We are in the process of appointing an auditor to audit NIMASA and the Nigerian Ports Authority. Maybe when the auditor goes round and comes back, the responsibility of the matter will be clearer.”
The minister added, “If you go to their office near Kirikiri, that’s worse. It was actually as if you are in Kirikiri (prison) itself. They had a resource centre and there was nothing there; they had a poor library and I said to myself, what is NIMASA actually all about? So, the essence of setting up this committee was to actually know what NIMASA was all about.
“It is not a witch-hunt. We should ask ourselves the question, has NIMASA at any point in time discharged its responsibility beyond the collection of revenue? And all those revenues that NIMASA has collected where are they? What did they do with the revenues?”
Amaechi stressed that the essence of setting up the committee was to see how the government could reposition NIMASA to perform its responsibility to the benefit of Nigerians.
“There has to be a change in NIMASA. The change shouldn’t be only in the Ministry of Transportation, it should also be in NIMASA. The way things are in NIMASA is such that people don’t even go to work,” he stated.