The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Adm. Awwal Gambo, says the Nigerian Navy (NN) has redoubled its effort to reduce high insurance premium for ships in Nigeria-controlled waters.
Awwal said this on Monday while he was inaugurating several projects that cut across the naval commands in Lagos State.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that some of the projects inaugurated included a girls hostel at the Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Ojo, and blocks of 16 by two bedrooms for senior rates.
Others are 24 by one Under Training Rating’s Accommodation and renovated diving wing at the Under Water Warfare School (UWWS) among other projects.
The CNS recalled that sustained and aggressive patrols within the maritime domain significantly reduced piracy and other maritime crimes in 2022.
“This culminated in delisting Nigeria from the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) list of piracy prone countries in March 2022.
“This further led to lifting of War Risk Premium tag on Nigeria that reduced high insurance premium for ships in Nigerian-controlled waters to about 960 dollars as against 5,000 per dollars shipment,” he said.
Awwal, however, said there were speculations that some Gulf of Guinea countries were again considered to be tagged with the War Risk Premium, due to recent developments within the region.
“It is on this development that efforts must be doubled round the clock, to maintain positive postures toward sustained intelligence driven patrols to rid our maritime space of insecurity,” he said.
The CNS reiterated that the Nigerian Navy, as the nations maritime sentinel, would not stop to ensure the domain is safer for sustainable development of the nation’s Blue Economy.
“Furthermore, the successful arraignment and conviction of Motor Tanker, HEROIC IDUN and her crew arrested last August, is an indication of the navy’s resolve to rid the nation of maritime crime.
“The crew was sentenced after a plea bargain to pay N5 million as penalty for the charge and 15 dollars million as restitution to the country.
“It is to be noted that the vessel and crew will not be released until the penalty and restitution are paid as well as public apologies made in the print and electronic media in Nigeria and Llyod’s list,” Awwal said.
He said that the projects inaugurated were initiated to consolidate on the comprehensive transformation plan, articulated to guide the Nigerian Navy towards effective discharge of its constitutional mandate.
“These infrastructural developments are in addition to already commissioned as well as ongoing projects like the reconstruction of the Base Flat Officers Accommodation in Nigerian Navy Ship BEECROFT.
“Also, a 250 metres runway at Naval Air Base, Ojo, with in-built lights and non-directional beacons, to aid training and operations in restricted visibility.
“The Nigerian Navy is cognisant of the significance of essential infrastructure and facilities within bases and barracks as they hasten necessary comfort and essential ambience to bolster security, productivity and efficiency,” Awwal said.
The CNS said that it was in this regard that the Naval Headquarters had continued to prioritise infrastructural development in the hierarchy of its preferences.
“Certainly, commissioning these structures will further ameliorate deficiencies experienced at the respective units and bases.
“I urge occupants of these structures and facilities to inculcate deliberate positive maintenance culture, so that these legacy projects will serve future generations of personnel.
“We must all be encouraged by this and many other achievements of the Nigerian Navy, regardless of unguarded comments and utterances from unpatriotic individuals,” he said.
Awwal added that preparations for the 2023 Presidential Fleet Review in honour of President Muhammadu Buhari’s tremendous support for the Nigerian Navy towards actualisation of its mandate.
“All hands must be on deck to ensure a befitting Presidential Fleet reviewed as the administration draws the curtain,” the CNS said.
Source: News Agency of Nigeria