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Sponsor maritime training among students, expert pleads



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A maritime expert, Mr Olu Akinsoji, on Saturday urged companies and agencies in the maritime sector to adopt students in the various maritime institutions and sponsor their training.

Akinsoji, who is also a former Sole Administrator, Maritime Academy, Oron, Akwa-Ibom, made the call in an interview with reporter in Lagos.

He said by sponsoring students’ training, companies and agencies would be helping to develop a pool of skilled manpower that would in turn meet their personnel needs in the future.

“One of the problems in the maritime sector is the lack of skilled manpower to adequately drive the growth of the industry and free it from the firm control by foreign operators.

“That is why a lot needs to be done by the government and all stakeholders to promote manpower development in the sector.

“Companies and government agencies such as Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and others should do a lot in that direction.

“They should adopt students in the maritime institutions and sponsor their training.

“By doing so, they are helping themselves as they would greatly require the services of these people in the future,’’ he said.

He explained that the idea was introduced when he was the sole administrator, adding that the initiative was doing well until he left the institution in 2000.

Akinsoji also decried the poor capacities of maritime institutions in the country and urged the Federal Government to address the situation by helping them to achieve their objectives.

He also urged the government to provide institutions with adequate training equipment, qualified teaching personnel and the right learning environment.