The Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki has charged the Federal Government’s Inter-Ministerial Committee for Nigeria’s bid into the Category ‘C’ Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), slated for November, 2021 to embrace all diplomatic and operational strategies in soliciting for votes that would ensure Nigeria gets a seat in the IMO Council.

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The Minister, made this known in Abuja yesterday when she inaugurated the steering committee tasked with responsibility of ensuring that Nigeria secures a seat in the Council of the IMO at the 32nd Regular Session of the Assembly in November/December 2021 at the IMO Headquarters in London.

Recalling that Nigeria had failed in her previous attempts to clinch the coveted seat, she challenged the members to work assiduously as Nigeria cannot afford to lose once more.

Making a case for why Nigeria deserves a seat in the IMO Council, Saraki disclosed that Nigeria generates the largest ‘throughput’ in the region and Nigeria’s commitments to the aspirations of IMO ought to put the country in good stead to have a place in the decision making organ of the Organization.

The Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki
The Minister of State for Transportation, Sen. Gbemisola Saraki.

The Minister noted that Nigeria as a maritime nation has invested enormous resources into making the maritime domain a hub in the sub-region by addressing issues of port decongestion, reduction of cargo charges, set in motion steps to achieve 24/7 port clearance time, emission control, maritime insecurity as well as addressing issues of domestication/ratification of IMO conventions/protocols.

She further charged the committee members to project Nigeria’s commitments and achievements to the international maritime community to facilitate her winning the coveted slot in the upcoming election.

The committee which consists of: