PIRACY: NIMASA, NAF commence aerial surveillance
By Godwin Oritse
IN a bid to tackle the menace of pirates in the Gulf of Guinea, GoG, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and Nigerian Air Force (NAF) have commenced aerial surveillance of the nation’s coastal and territorial waters with a view to securing investments in the marine sector.
According to a statement signed by Head of Public Relation of the agency, Mr. Philip Kyanet, the Director-General of NIMASA, Dr. Bashir Jamoh, said that NIMASA was committed to ensuring the success of the Deep Blue Project with adequate cooperation from all stakeholders.
He said: “We have received two Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), and the two special mission aircrafts are expected to arrive Nigeria before the end of the year. The challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the special training for the personnel to man these air assets, but we have found a way around it. We will continue to seek your partnership to secure the Nigerian maritime domain.”
He also disclosed that 17 fast interceptor boats, 15 armoured vehicles, and two special mission vessels were some of the land and marine assets already on the ground. He said all hands must be on deck to secure the country’s maritime environment and change all negative narratives.
Similarly, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakarsaid that NAF had maintained a longstanding cordial relationship with NIMASA, with a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on Maritime Air Surveillance and Intelligence signed in 2013. He said, though, the MOU had elapsed; NAF had continued 1to play a crucial role in maritime security, working closely with the Nigerian Navy and NIMASA.
Written by Kartia Velino