ISPS Code: Stakeholders say Nigeria has made good progress

Maritime stakeholders including representatives of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), the Nigerian Port Authority (NPA) and the Nigerian Police Force have said that Nigeria is making progress in its level of compliance to International Ships & Ports Facility Security (ISPS) code.

The stakeholders who spoke at the 10th anniversary celebration of the ISPS Code organized by the Port Facility Security Officers’ (PFSO) forum in partnership with the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) in Lagos on Tuesday said even with the improvement, there is need to put in place measures that will upgrade the security of not only ships but also of port terminals.

Former PFSO chairman, Major Henry Ajetumobi said while the country has recorded some successes in implementation of the ISPS code, NIMASA as the Designated Authority (DA) still needs to adopt more innovative security measures especially in the face of security challenges facing the country.

“I think it will be dangerous to go into that kind of complacency that we have fully complied with ISPS code. But I can say that we have moved on, we are not where we started from, we have left Egypt but Canaan is still far ahead. The rest of the maritime world realizes that there is never a question of saying that you are satisfied with the milestone you have recorded, you have to move on,” he said.

He said security threats emerge daily hence the need for security officers to continuously evaluate and assess risk elements within their areas of operations in order to properly internalise the principles of the ISPS code.

On his part, representative of the Assistant General Manager, Security NPA Western Port, Mohammed Umar, said NPA in collaboration with NIMASA is ensuring that port facilities that have been certified as  ISPS Code complaint by the United Stated sustain their status.

He said: “NPA and the DA is carrying out monitoring and evaluation of the terminals on quarterly basis to make sure that the levels do not fall below expectation.”

Representative of the Director General of NIMASA, Engr, Oderinde Hakeem, said that the agency is working towards ensuring that port facilities that are yet to comply with ISPS code are fully compliant.

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