Maritime workers union gets N800m ITF grant to build seafarers centre in Nigeria

Maritime workers union gets N800m ITF grant to build seafarers centre in Nigeria
L-R: President General, Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Comrade Adewale Adeyanju; Executive Director Operations,Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Engr. Fatai Adeyemi; Director General, NIMASA, Dr Bashir Jamoh; Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola; Head of the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) Seafarers Trust, Katie Higginbottom; ITF’s Francophone African Countries Coordinator, Bayla Sow; ITF Seafarers’ Trust Grant Manager, Luca Tommasi and Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services of NIMASA, Jibril Abba during a meeting between NIMASA and the ITF team in Lagos last Thursday.


The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) UK has approved a grant worth more than N800 million to the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) to build an ultramodern Seafarers Recreation Centre in Nigeria.

The construction of the facility will be done in partnership with the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA).

Head of ITF Seafarers Trust Fund, Katie Higginbottom, who announced this during a meeting with the Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola in Lagos last Thursday, noted that the grant was approved after a thorough assessment of Nigeria’s suitability.

“The centre will serve not only Nigerian seafarers but also others in the West African region and beyond. We have absolute faith and trust in the  Comrade Adeyanju led MWUN and we are very pleased with Dr Jamoh and his team at NIMASA for their enthusiasm towards seafarers welfare.

“MWUN has built up their credibility within the ITF family and we are pleased to partner them and NIMASA on this project. The grant approval process endured three years of rigorous assessment and we are satisfied that it is safe to invest in the Nigerian maritime industry. Our visit to Nigeria is for site inspection so the project can commence”. Higginbottom said.

Also speaking, Minister Oyetola appreciated the ITF for trusting Nigeria with the project, assuring that the funds to be deployed by the workers’ federation for the recreation centre will be judiciously utilised.

He also assured the ITF team that NIMASA will fulfil its obligations towards actualisation the project.

“Seafarers are the real drivers of the maritime industry. They sacrifice a lot for human existence, spending most of their time away from family and onboard vessels. So creating this opportunity for social interaction is encouraging and commendable.

“I commend your decision to personally come to Nigeria and see things for yourself. It shows that you are committed to the project. To ensure judicious use of your grant, I want to assure you that the Nigerian government will ensure the project is completed in record time.

“The fact that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR, established a standalone ministry for the maritime industry shows Nigeria’s commitment to make the country a major maritime nation. I want to assure you that the grant will be put to use as expected. The Federal Government through our ministry will closely monitor the project. I commend the DG NIMASA, Dr Jamoh and the MWUN President General Comrade Adeyanju for their vision and effort,” he said.

On his part, the Director General of NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh said, “We at NIMASA welcome this project wholeheartedly. We consider this project – a major infrastructural capital development for seafarers welfare, hence we keyed into it. It will go a long way in improving the mental health of seafarers and assist their social integration having spent much of their time out there on the Seas.

“I am pleased that our challenge to MWUN some years ago is bearing positive fruits. This is a result of the constant engagement sessions we always have with Comrade Adeyanju, who believes in dialogue. Since our Minister has sanctioned this project, I can assure you that NIMASA will meet its obligations.”

The President General of MWUN, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju noted that the quest to better the lot of seafarers informed the decision to seek funding from the United Kingdom based ITF.

He said, “The DG NIMASA approached me some time ago challenging us to do something for seafarers. We took up the challenge but considering the current financial situation in the country, we sought a grant from ITF. We are very happy with NIMASA for all they have been doing,” he said.

The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF), which has the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) as one of its affiliates, approved the grant worth more than N800 million to partly fund the building of a Seafarers Recreation Centre in Nigeria.

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