NIWA Issues National Skippers License, Certificates To Ten NDLEA Officers
Fred Omotara, Lagos
The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) on Friday issued Certificates and National Skippers License to ten officers of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for successfully undergoing the five major courses in inland waterways training.
Speaking during the certificate presentation held at the Lagos Area Office of NIWA, the Lagos Area Manager, Engineer Sarat Braimah explained that other agencies would also be written to for them to key in into the ongoing training programme.
According to Engineer Sarat Braimah, “Over the years, we have realised that most of the boat mishaps that occur on our waterways are down to human error.
“So we then decided to train the commercial boat skippers to ensure that the menace of boat accidents is reduced.
“Just as they say, if you don’t train them, don’t blame them. Many boat skippers have been trained by us and many more are still undergoing the training programme.
“In the course of the training, the NDLEA wrote to us that they want to be part of the training. That’s why we held training for these ten successful officers of the NDLEA.
“We will soon be writing to other government agencies for them to partake in this ongoing training program.”
Speaking earlier, President of the Metropolitan Waterways Concepts Ltd, the company handling the training programme on behalf of NIWA, Engineer Onikoyi Lateef Adio explained that the company is the only firm offering such training on inland waterways navigation in the entire West African sub-region.
In the words of Engineer Onikoyi Lateef Adio, “I wish to appreciate the National Inland Waterways Authority for the approval and the signing of the consultancy/partnership agreement with us for the training and certification of all boat drivers (skippers) on the Inland Waterways in the Lagos Zone.
“We are gathered here this afternoon to present Certificates and National Skippers Licenses to Ten Officers of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency who have successfully undergone the Five Major Courses in Maritime and some who have passed the prescribed Examinations for the issuance of the National Skippers License. The Officers were trained by us on the following Maritime Courses: Power Boat and RIB Master Course which is the NIWA approved training for all Boat Drivers (skippers); Day Skippers Course which is the Advance Training for the Operation of Boats in the Coastal Passage; Coastal Yachts Master which is more of the Practical Training of the Day Skippers Course.
“The Officers were also trained on Seamanship, Coastal Navigation and Pilotage, Chart works, Electronic Chart works, Position Fixing, Plotting a Course to Steer, Weather Forecasting, Meteorology and Weather Prediction etc.
“Other courses that the officers undertook includes Advance Boat Handling for Coastal Passage, Shaping and Plotting, Marine Radio Short Range (VHF) Communication.
“I have no doubt that the Officers who have attended the courses have gained a lot and increased their Competency in boat handling. Once again, please permit me to appreciate the British Deputy High Commission for the great opportunity given to the officers of the NDLEA by sponsoring the training.
“I will not end this address without appreciating my dear sister, the Area Manager Engr. (Mrs) Sarat Omolara Braimah who is always ready to give her support for any idea that will improve and make our waterways safe