The existing interagency collaboration the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has with the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) is getting better with the current MoU on Seafarers’ Travel document and other joint ventures.
Comptroller General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) Mr. Isah Idris Jere stated this when he led senior officials of the Service on a working visit to NIMASA.
Receiving the guests, NIMASA Director General, Dr. Bashir Jamoh noted the crucial role the NIS plays in enhancing security in the maritime domain.
He referred to the seamless issuance
of travel documents to seafarers by the NIS as a key ingredient of the nation’s quest to grow the maritime industry.
“Security on land is key to achieving a safe and secure maritime domain. NIMASA appreciates the need to work closely with the Immigration Service to improve security in the maritime domain. We need the Service to play a major role in issues of crew nationality, seafarers travel document and managing issues of stowaways, amongst others.
The DG and the Immigration Comptroller General thus agreed to develop a Memorandum of Understanding to provide a framework for the working relationship.
The NIMASA DG also commended the contribution of the NIS in implementing the Suppression of Piracy and other Maritime Offences (SPOMO) Act, stating “The passing into law of the SPOMO Act, and subsequent prosecutions recorded under that law have involved working closely with the NIS. With that being said, NIMASA will continue to offer our helping hand to the Nigeria Immigration Service even as we anticipate further collaboration”.
On his part, the NIS Comptroller General identified issuance of temporary work permits to international vessel crews as well as preventing stowaways, as areas of frequent collaboration between both organs of Government while also commending NIMASA’s automation of dockworkers registration nationwide.
He said: “Our visit to NIMASA is a signal that the Nigeria Immigration Service seeks continued collaboration and deepened synergy as we collectively work to address the issues facing us in our coastal lines and in maintaining the integrity of our territorial waters”.
“We welcome the Agency’s automation of dockworkers registration and issuance of biometric identity cards as a great step in the task of securing the nation’s ports.