Nigeria’s leading maritime media firm, Ships & Ports Communication, has called for entries into the seventh edition of the Ships & Ports Annual National Essay Competition.
This year, participants are expected to write on the theme: “How to check corruption at Nigerian ports”.
Entries, according to the Coordinator of the annual competition, Ms Eucharia Okoli, will open today (2nd October) and close on 15th November, 2013, while prizes will be presented to winners in Lagos on Friday, 13th December, 2013.
The prizes for this year’s competition include Prize for Best Overall Essay, Prize for Creativity, Prize for Originality, Prize for Research, and those for outstanding essays.
She said that various cash prizes will be presented to winners while the Best Overall Essay winner will smile home with N100,000.
She said the competition is open to every member of the public irrespective of age, sex and vocation.
Okoli explained that the focus this year is to help proffer solution to the menace of corruption at the nation’s seaports which, she said, is assuming a worrisome dimension and impairing the prompt clearance of goods.
She said that, since inception in 2007, the Ships & Ports Annual National Essay Competition sets out to encourage the average Nigerian to think aloud about the maritime industry and deepen the public’s knowledge of operations in the industry.
“In its seventh year, the Ships & Ports Annual National Essay Competition has come of age. The objectives have remained the same over the years which include making people to spare some thoughts for the shipping sector and make intellectual contribution to its growth and development.
“The annual competition is in pursuit of our commitment of enabling Nigerians appreciate the potentials of the nation’s maritime sector and ruminate over its importance to their means of livelihood and well-being,” Okoli said in a press statement released by the company over the weekend.
In the maiden edition of the competition, in the last quarter of 2007, a Naval officer, Lt. Cdr. Atakpa Sunday Daniel (now a Commander and Head of the Hydrography Unit of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA), emerged winner, taking home the N100, 000 Dangote Port Operations/Genesis Worldwide Shipping Prize for Best Overall Essay, while Mr. Adewale Opeyemi, then a Master’s degree student at the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Niger State, emerged winner of the 2008 edition, smiling home with the same prize money donated by Dangote Port Operations.
A Lagos-based lawyer, Mr. Felix Ifeanyi Ejike-Ume, emerged the winner of the 2009 edition while the star prize of a Kia Picanto car donated by Ships & Ports Communication in commemoration of the nation’s 50th Independence Anniversary was won by a Post-Graduate student of the University of Ibadan, Mr. Uchenna Jerome Orji, who won the 2010 edition of the competition.
A journalist with the Nigerian Tribune, Peter Chukwuma Okparaocha won the 2011 edition while the 2012 edition produced the first female winner; Miss Funke Abimbola Olotu – a 2010 graduate of the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Okoli said that her company has broadened the scope of the Annual competition considering the enormous interest past editions have generated among Nigerians and industry stakeholders.
Ships & Ports Communication Company is Nigeria’s leading communication company with bias for projecting events in the Nigerian maritime sector.
The company runs a daily radio programme called Ships & Ports on Radio One 103.5 FM Lagos and weekly on Liberty Radio, Kaduna.
The company also publishes the sector’s first and only free daily and leading newspaper titled Ships & Ports Daily.
The company also organises a career programme tagged Ships & Ports Quarterly Career Guide, aimed at exposing Nigerians, especially the young ones, to the enormous career opportunities that abound in the nation’s maritime sector.
Ships & Ports also organises and hosts the Annual Maritime Football Cup Competition.