27 January 2012
It has being alleged that the Federal Government has contracted the nation’s maritime domain to a Niger Delta ex-militant, through a memo that officially auctions it to a company that belong to the leading former Niger Delta Militant.
On 5 January 2012, the Ministry of Transport submitted a memorandum titled: “Award of contract for the strategic concessionary partnership with nimasa to provide platform for tracking ships and cargoes, enforce regulatory compliance and surveillance of the entire nigerian maritime domain,” to the Federal Executive Council.
The principal objective of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, is to ensure the safety and security of shipping/maritime trade in a protected marine environment but Resource constraint has made it difficult for NIMASA to acquire the requisite operational platforms needed to effectively carry out surveillance of the country’s coastline.
The surveillance operations which ought to be carried out in collaboration with the Nigerian Navy in line with the existing Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is aimed at addressing the challenges in the maritime industry.
The duty covers monitoring, patrol, enforcement of conventions and improvement of revenue.
The platform upon completion will enhance effective patrol and surveillance of the country’s coastline to achieve total maritime domain awareness
The Due Process guidelines, were followed and the ICRC has approved the PPP arrangement on a ‘no cure no pay’ basis in favour of Messrs Global West Vessel Specialist Nigeria Limited, GWVSL, with an initial investment of $103,400,000 inclusive of all taxes on a contractor financed Supply Operate and Transfer (SOT) Concession for 10 years based on performance.
The BPP reviewed the procurement process and issued a Certificate of ‘No Objection’ for the provision of platforms for tracking ships and cargoes, enforcement of regulatory compliance and surveillance of the Nigerian maritime domain for the Ministry of Transport/NIMASA in favour of Messrs Global West Vessel Specialist Nigeria Limited, GWVSL, with an initial investment in the sum of $103,400,000 only on a contractor financed supply and transfer concession for 10 years and renewable for further two terms of five years each, based on performance as recommended by ICRC and no more, to avoid undue monopoly of the service by the concessionaire.
The projected amount accruable to government over the concession period will not be less than N124billion.
The President vide letter Ref. No. PRES/99/MT/61, 9 November, 2011 granted anticipatory approval for the project while the Attorney General of the Federation/Minister of Justice reviewed and approved the Draft Agreement.
Also to be noted is that this project is contractor financed and does not require any government appropriation.
More so that this project will create 1,375 jobs to Nigerian professional and non-professionals directly and 1,620 jobs indirectly; and the President’s anticipatory approval for the concessioning of the provision of security, monitoring and enforcement of operational platforms on Nigerian waters to Ministry of Transport/NIMASA.
The Presidency sent the memo to the National Assembly last week, requesting it to consider it in place of the earlier memo on coastal guards submitted by the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. The essential difference between the two memos is that while Yar’Adua envisaged an outfit that is composed of various agencies of government related to maritime functions, Jonathan’s memo is contracting the job to a private company in spite the national security implications.