According to local sources, the Federal Government of Nigeria halted the National Seafarers Development Programme (NSDP) concerning the training of cadets aboard, as it has costed N20 billion, up to now. The NSDP is a scholarship partly funded by the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and State governments in the ratio of 40-60%.
NIMASA, who firstly launched the program back in 2009, noted that it has spend more than N20 billion to train 2,500 seafarers under the (NSDP) from 2011 to January 2015.
The Minister of Transportation, who recently spoke at the Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Oron, noted that he is against the training of cadets abroad from when he took office in 2015. He continued that when he took the office, they gave him almost a thousand documents with selected people from Ogato go oversea for seafaring; Yet, he noted that no person has been approved.
NIMASA has written, they have came to me, I said no they should hold on. I wanted to do it last month but I didn’t because the reason MAN Oron is not progressing is because we are able to send people overseas and after training they come back to join the unemployment queue.
… Minister of Transportation commented.
In addition, since the scheme started in 2011, cadets have graduated from three institutions including John Moores University Liverpool and South Tyneside College Newcastle both in the United Kingdom and Arab academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport, Alexandra, Egypt. The N20 billion included training fees, allowances, cost of laptops, books and other learning gadgets.
The minister highlighted that the seafaring academy in Egypt and Ghana were built at about the same time lamented that Nigeria Maritime Academy is lagging behind her contemporaries in Africa.