By Innocent Orok
The Dangote Refinery has reached out to the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) for support and collaboration towards the operations of the refinery devoid of delays and impediments.
Akin Omole, the Managing Director of Dangote Ports Operations, who paid a working visit to the headquarters of NIMASA on Tuesday, January 23rd, 2024 revealed that his Organisation needs the support and collaboration of NIMASA, as a critical agency in shipping operations, to ensure the smooth running of the refinery.
He said his team was in NIMASA to seek a clear understanding of the Cabotage laws that govern the crude supply to the refinery so that ” we are not in the breach of the law and business is not impeded”
He commended NIMASA for its support since the operations of the refinery started and said it was necessary to further deepen the cooperation.
He said, “NIMASA has been supportive of our operations since we started to ensure the vessels supplying crude to the refinery berthed without any encumbrance or delay.
” We thought it necessary to come and show our appreciation to the DG and ensure there is sustained support and collaboration between our organization and NIMASA”.
“Essentially, there are rules governing the operations of ships on Nigerian waters, especially in the area of Cabotage.
” We thought it necessary to come and see the management of NIMASA regarding certain areas of the implementation of the Cabotage Act so that we are not in breach of the Act and at the same time, business is not impeded, obstructed, or delayed.
” You know in shipping, a day delay is a huge cost. We have about an average of $50,000 demurrage on a ship a day”.
” So we want to be sure that all these kinds of delays are not experienced, all the bottlenecks and hindrances that can cause these delays are addressed and eliminated by both teams” Omole explained.
Earlier, Dr Bashir Jamoh, the NIMASA DG, expressed appreciation for the visit of the Dangote Refinery team and its quest to play by the rules.
He noted that NIMASA and Dangote Group have been partners in progress since about 30 years he has been in the agency.
Jamoh stated that was the reason NIMASA has not come down with a sledge hammer on the organization in terms of full compliance with the relevant rules since the refinery commenced operations.
To further ensure that the Dangote Refinery operations go on smoothly, Jamoh announced a two-member committee, comprising the Director, Cabotage and the Director, of Internal Audit, to work with the team from Dangote Refinery to identify and address any grey areas that may impede the operations of the facility.
He charged the committee, which he said could co-opt anyone who could add value to its assignment, to come out with workable ideas within two weeks that would enhance the operation of the refinery.
” I therefore nominate the Director, Cabotage, the Director, Internal Audit.
“The Director, Cabotage will digest the law and the Director, Internal Audit will ensure that every penny of the Agency is collected.
“You can however bring in anyone who you think can work with you to achieve your goal” Jamoh declared”.