The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, has stated that collaboration among relevant agencies and professional bodies and building of strong institutions remain the sin qua non for the development of an effective transportation sector in Nigeria, stressing that this is a basic condition for economic development.

Dakuku spoke in Lagos in a goodwill message at the investiture ceremony for Dr. Bashir Jamoh, the newly elected President of the Chartered Institute of Transport Administration in Nigeria (CIoTA), and the inauguration of CIoTA’s National Executive Council and Governing Council.

Founder of Centre for Values in Leadership, Professor Pat Utomi, who delivered the keynote address entitled: “Ensuring Competitiveness and Attractiveness in Nigeria’s Transport Sector: The Role of Professional Bodies” at the investiture, corroborated this position, emphasising the need for strong transport infrastructure in Nigeria.

The DG, who was represented by the Executive Director, Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, Mr. Gambo Ahmed, said NIMASA was committed to the actualisation of a robust transport sector in the country.

He also assured that the agency will continue to work with professionals in the transport sector to make it more viable and globally competitive. The DG applauded the election of Jamoh, who is also NIMASA’s Executive Director, Finance and Administration, as President of CIoTA. Dakuku expressed the readiness of the Agency to work with the institute and other relevant bodies to realise a viable transportation sector, which will in-turn aid economic growth and development.

“In NIMASA, we have adopted collaboration as a means to achieving our mandates, because we know we cannot do it alone. The transport sector is too large, hence the need for concerted efforts, through partnerships, cannot be overstated, as this is the only way we can compete favourably with other nations in the globe,” the DG said. 

Professor Pat Utomi delivered the keynote address at the occasion, with the theme, “Ensuring Competitiveness and Attractiveness in the Nigerian Transportation Sector – The Role of Professional Bodies.” Utomi said in his paper that infrastructure and solid institutions were key to resolution of the challenges facing the transportation sector, saying the solution lies with professionals in the sector.

He noted that the economy depended solely on the transportation sector for growth and survival and charged the newly elected executives to come up with globally acceptable positions, which they should present to those in authority to move the transportation sector forward. 

While bemoaning the gridlock in the Apapa area of Lagos, Utomi called on the professionals to work with the government in ensuring that intermodal transportation was achieved, as it will also help the economy to develop.

In his acceptance speech, the newly elected President of CIoTA stated that there was a symbiotic relationship between transportation and life. “No matter where you come from, you must use one means of transportation or another”, he said.

Jamoh said the institute was created to augment government’s efforts by proffering possible solutions to the challenges facing the transportation sector in Nigeria. He promised that CIoTA will work with relevant bodies and associations to ensure the realisation of an efficient transport sector.

Jamoh also said the institute will in the next few months come up with some programmes and also create a platform where all transport-related bodies would come together to brainstorm and share ideas with the relevant authorities for the development of the sector.  

In attendance at the event were Chairman, Board of Trustees of CIoTA Nigeria, HRM Alaiyeluwa Oba Rafiu Babatunde Balogun, Adetoyose Ejalonibu II, Elejinrin of Ejinrin Land, Lagos State; Chief Adebayo Sarumi; and Otunba Kunle Folarin, among other notable stakeholders.