The Director General, DG, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Peterside Dakuku, has admitted that he had no maritime or technical experience prior to his appointment by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He stated this apparently reacting to critics that he got the NIMASA plump job through political patronage.
Dakuku, who spoke at a round table television program monitored in Abuja during the weekend, however, explained that he was fished out for the job based on leadership and managerial competence, which were criteria required for the job at the point of entry.
Recall, that Dakuku was the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Rivers State.
He was to succeed former Rivers Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, but lost the election to Governor Nyesom Wike of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
As a way of compensating him, Amaechi made Dakuku the Director General of highly lucrative NIMASA, an agency under the Transport Ministry, where Amaechi is Minister.
Speaking, Dakuku said: “I have no experience in maritime management but I have leadership and managerial capacity: I was fished out as one of those with leadership capacity and managerial competence”, he maintained.
He added that these were the qualities required by government to transform NIMASA back to growth and economic development.
According to him, one of the current executive directors came from the banking sector because of his managerial competence, and government needed men with integrity to drive the change.
“We have those with technical capacity coupled with those of us with leadership skills”, he added.
The DG explained that part of the major problems faced by the agency was that previous administration missed the mandate as provided by the establishing Act and turned the place to a transaction driven agency.
He explained that the Act provides the promotion of indigenous shipping and regulation of shipping in Nigeria’s territorial waters but that those who were previously there, deviated and resorted to business of sharing contracts and making money.
According to him, his administration has developed a three -year plan which will transform the maritime sector by ensuring efficiency through restructuring: “we will be looking at ship inspection, safety and getting more of Nigerians involved’’.
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