The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi has threatened to scrap the Nigerian Maritime University project started by the immediate past administration of Goodluck Jonathan, stressing that it is “a waste of resources.”
This was as he also threatened to scrap the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA.
The Nigerian Maritime University project was started by Jonathan to quicken the development of human capacity to take over the cabotage trade “in the very near future”.
Amaechi, while addressing the senate committee on marine transport on Tuesday, expressed dissatisfaction with the operation of NIMASA saying the agency had nothing to show for the N63billion revenue it generated in the previous year.
He alleged that the agency outsourced its responsibility to former militant leader, Government Ekpemupolo, also known as Tompolo.
In the minister’s words, “I don’t think we are proceeding with the university being proposed by NIMASA because it is a waste of resources, and unfortunately a lot of money had already been released for the university project hence there is no structure on ground but just the feasibility study,”
“The Chinese company contracted, confirmed that only the feasibility study was in place.
“We are not going ahead with the university project proposed by NIMASA because we have an institution in Oron, we have Nigeria Institute of Transport Technology, Zaria, and we have the Nigerian College of Aviation in Zaria which we could upgrade to a University status and NIMASA is proposing to build a new one.”
Stating that NIMASA was being operated in a way which appears as if its main mandate was to collect levies, Amaechi said, “Currently, the way NIMASA is, it looks as if it was established just for the purpose of collecting money and nothing more,”
“If NIMASA failed to perform its core responsibility, then it has no business existing. If it is just to collect money from individuals, anybody can do that. We can hire a tax collector to collect money from maritime operators on behalf of federal ministry of transport.
“It is either NIMASA sit up and carry out its own responsibility or we come to the national assembly to repeal the act setting it up.”