By Ignatius Ushie
The Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi has applauded the management of Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN) Iron over its dedication and commitment in transforming and restructuring the institution to meet international standard. This was contained in a statement obtained by Transport Day Newspaper in Abuja.
Amaechi said this at the just concluded 2020 Ministerial Retreat held in Oron, Akwa Ibom after commissioning the newly acquired Simulators to be used for training of the Cadets adding that the management under the leadership of the Rector Duja Effedua has shown commitment and dedication in transforming the institution without any form of monitoring from the ministry, stating that when people do what they are appointed to do with or without supervision things will be better.
Amaechi said that during his first tenure as a Minister, the academy was dilapidated and almost at the verge of being closed down because of lack of training equipment, infrastructural deficit, overpopulation which led to the set up of an Interim Committee to look at the challenges facing the school and submit reports with recommendations.
According to the Minister, “There is nothing about the achievements, anybody can achieve that, but what worries me is that all this while that the school was created why could they not achieve what he has achieved?
“Anybody could do that, is rather commitment and dedication on their part because nobody is checking them, it’s between him and God kind of thing, that he has an assignment and needs to deliver but if we don’t have that kind of person that has commitment to his assignment then we have a problem.
“I think the Ministry of Transport must set up a machinery in which they monitor their agencies, so that we know their objectives, what they have set out for themselves to achieve while the ministry ensures that it achieved or sanctions those who are not able to attain those achievements.
“What we are currently having now are agencies performing according to low set standards, do whatever they like, some are achieving what they plan to achieve and others are not but for him am glad he achieved his set plan.” He said
Amaechi commissioned the 360 degrees Ship manoeuvring simulator & Dynamic positioning, Engine room simulator (ERS) and Multifunctional classroom simulator (MFC).
The simulators are like real-life ships used in training cadets both in navigation and engine room operations. This training gives the cadets knowledge and hands-on experience in ship operations.
Speaking on the simulators, the Rector, Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Duja Effedua explained that in all, the Academy has 10 simulators.
“We have the Full Mission Bridge simulator, the Full Mission Engine Room simulator. The Multi-Functional Classroom is a combination of eight simulators. The software are there for whatever programme that the instructor wants to run. For example, if the student wants to learn Rules Of the Road, the system will change to Rules Of The Road.
“If it is GMDSS that the instructor wants to teach, the system will change to GMDSS. This is the latest in the world of simulation because the regular generic simulators cant train more than four or five people at a time. Whatever you saw at the Full Mission Bridge can be done at the Multi-Functional Classroom.”
He said as part of the restructuring of the institution, before, over 1,200 to 2000 Cadets were admitted per stream in the academy, which has been changed to less than 300 Cadets per stream to create a conducive environment for the Cadets to study.
According to him, all the Cadets, except those in the School of Maritime Transport, are members of the Nautical Institute of the UK, which the institution always paid for them.
“We have some foreign professionals- nine master mariners. We also have 58 young Nigerian professionals. We trained 15 of our staff on the latest simulators acquired. We have the Full Mission Engine Room, the Full Mission Bridge simulators and the latest of them all, the Multifunctional Classroom.
“On hostel accommodation- our cadets used to stay 18 people in a room and that was not correct. The minister frowned on that condition and now they have two-man rooms, which are all ensuite.
The commissioning of the facilities was done by the Hon. Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi, alongside the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani, and other guests from the ministry.