In a bid to ensure that member states have an effective Port State Control (PSC) regime, the Abuja Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control for West and Central Africa has commenced a two-week mentor-mentee capacity building program for PSC officers from Sierra Leone.
The training, organised by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), Abuja MoU and the Nigerian Maritime and Safety Agency (NIMASA) started on Tuesday with an opening event at the NIMASA headquarters.
Speaking at the event, the Secretary-General Abuja MoU, Captain Sunday Umoren, said the mentor-mentee program was created to provide technical support through on-the-job training and cross orientation of ideas for the raw improvement of Port State Control Institutions in the African Region towards knowing substandard ships, ensuring safety and employment of seafarers while protecting the marine environment and maritime assets.
He said that an effective port state control regime which results in saving of lives through emission and reduction of substandard ships including ship accidents, preservation of the marine environment and improving in the working conditions of seafarers is facing its worst and this impacts on the economy so there is need for harmonisation of the control institution regime.
“To achieve this, it is expected that we facilitate a combined training of port state control officers within the region using the data base system across our region such as the Abuja MoU Information System (AMIS), the Global Integrated Ship Information System (GISIS) of the International Maritime Organisation among others,” he said.
The Director General of NIMASA, Bashir Jamoh who was represented by the Executive Director Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, Victor Ochei appreciated the Abuja MoU Secretariat for their effort in coordinating and harmonising regional port state control activities within the West and Central African region.
The Executive Director, Sierra Leone Maritime Administration, Paul Sobba Massaquoi said the mentor-mentee scheme of the Abuja MoU was designed for member states who have challenges in effectively conducting Port State Control inspections and related activities. He said the scheme also provides member states with platforms to be mentored by other member states who are in position to do so.