Thirty-five years after its establishment, the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron, Akwa Ibom State is still battling with inadequate amenities.Some students of the academy reportedly sit on the floor to receive lectures due to the rowdiness and insufficient furniture in the classrooms.
A daily newspaper, New Telegraph reported that the most affected students are mainly those in the first year of the Ordinary National Diploma (OND) programme of the academy.
The academy, which was established by the Federal Government in 1979, is still struggling to achieve adequate training for seafarers due to inadequate funding by the government.
MAN lacks training vessels for the mandatory sea-time training, which qualifies a cadet to receive certificate of competency that will permit them to work on-board seagoing vessels.
However, with the dwindling revenue of government as a result of the crash in the prices of crude oil, its situation might get worse in 2015.
Already, the academy has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) for affiliation to the World Maritime University (WMU) in Malmo, Sweden, and for the provision of sea-time experience to a backlog of over 5,000 cadets. WMU is owned by the IMO.
Its Rector, Mr. Joshua Okpo recently said: “Hopefully, we should be able to put 250 cadets – 100 of them deck officers and 150 of them engineers – to have their sea time experience for 12 months to enable them acquire their certificates of competency. It will cost us 100 euros per cadet per day which amounts to 8.6 million euros per year.”
The academy’s funding is derived from five per cent of the annual revenue of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), which is responsible for seafarers’ standards and certification in the country.
All attempts by SHIPS & PORTS DAILY to contact the Public Relations Officer of the academy, Mr. Siddi Mkpandiok to speak on the matter proved abortive as he neither answered calls made to his mobile phone nor responded to text messages sent to him.
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