The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Jaji Sambo, has expressed optimism that Ministry will be able to secure accommodation to enable the take off of the Regional Maritime Development Bank in 90 days.
The Minister disclosed this when he received the Secretary General, Maritime Organisation of West and Central Africa, Dr. Paul Adalikwu in his office at the Ministry.
According to Sambo, “When i resumed here, i realised immediately that the Regional Maritime Bank is one of the lowest hanging fruits that we can achieve within a very very short time. Infact 90 days is too long”.
Sambo observed that all efforts towards securing accommodation via the Central Bank of Nigeria has not yielded any outcome, adding that he will approach the Attorney General of the Federation to see if one of the forfeited properties can be allocated to the bank.
Speaking further, Sambo encouraged the Secretary General, to leverage on MOWCA as a regional organisation to push for Nigeria’s intent of becoming member of Category C in International Maritime Organization, IMO.
Speaking earlier, the Secretary General of MOWCA, Dr. Paul Adalikwu, stated that the idea of a Regional Maritime Development bank , RMDB, was conceived 11 years ago to facilitate single digit interest loans to provide leeway to key players in the sector and enable them compete favourably with their international counterparts.
Adalikwu said, “8 countries have signed the Charter as required in the document establishing the bank. Two weeks ago, DRC Congo also signed making it 9 countries. One above the threshold required for the establishment of the Act”.
He further informed that the RMDB organogram has been adopted by council members and the positions of President of the body, Company Secretary and a seat on the board ceded to Nigeria while Cameroun is to produce the Vice President 1, and Ivory Coast, Vice President 2, adding that other members countries are to provide board members for the Maritime bank.
Also speaking, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, commended Dr. Adalikwu, on the forthcoming regional meeting scheduled to hold in Abuja in November, 2022, where the Secretary General of International Monetary Organisation (IMO), Kitlack Lim, will seek to prevail on the 25 member States to adopt the Suppression of Piracy and Other Maritime Offences (SPOMO) Act, to enable trial of piracy cases within the MOWCA sub-region irrespective of whichever sub-region the crime was committed.
The meeting had in attendance the Minister of State for Transportation, Prince Ademola Adewole Adegoroye, Director, Maritime Services, Babatunde Bombata, Deputy Director, Cabotage & Shipping, Rita Zoaka and others.
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