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NPA HydroInfo

Deepening hydrographic intelligence of Nigeria’s territorial waters crucial—NPA

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Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman has hailed the high command of the Nigerian Navy (NN) for taking the lead in producing the first navigational chart of the Nigerian waters.
This is as she called for greater synergy among maritime stakeholders with the view to working in unison towards building a holistic Nigerian Maritime Space Chart (NMSC) as soon as possible.
Bala Usman added that about 80% of the Nations Territorial Waters are yet to be surveyed whilst 90% are yet to be charted going by available data.
Explaining more during the occasion of the celebration of the 2019 World Hydrographic Day at Naval Dockyard in Lagos, NPA boss observed that efficient management of the Maritime Environment calls for plausible knowledge and professionalism in order to evolve critical strategies that would secure and regulate activities in the sector for proper conservation and sustainable use and exploitation of the resources therein.
While observing that the selected theme of ‘Hydrographic Information to Drive Marine Knowledge,’ could not have been more appropriate for the event adding that without the basic information as provided by hydrography details, it would be difficult to acquire necessary knowledge for exploration and exploitation of the Maritime Environment.
Accordingly, she called for collaborative efforts with the industry through information sharing on data especially and joint survey efforts projects so as to leverage the Local Chart Production Capacity already Developed by the Nigerian Navy Hydrographic Office (NNHO). She opined that through these efforts, more Maritime information would be made available to Government and Maritime Operators in an internationally accepted manner explaining that these would in turn stimulate effective governance of the Nations Territorial Waters and sustainable use of our Maritime Resources to the benefit of the Nation at large.
Bala Usman averred that “It is worth mentioning that Hydrography as an endeavor, specifically assisted the NPA Management in deepening our channels, expansion of Marine Services to Ijegun Egba channel which were critical for the successful navigation and anchoring of the famous EGINA FPSO”.
While believing that safety, security, and the biodiversity of the environment play important roles in the Maritime Environment, she pointed out that “this is why the United Nation (UN) sustainable development Goal 14, lays emphasis on the conservation and sustainable use of the ocean, seas and Marine Resources. This therefore places a demand on Littoral Nation to evolve measures for efficient Management of their Marine Environment”.
Earlier in his address, the Chief of Naval Staff Vice, Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas said the Nigerian Navy are the first to produce Navigational Chart for the National Waters and express the hope that the launching of the Chart would take the Nations Maritime Sector to greater height.
He stated that the Hydrographic Chart is not only for the safety and security within the Nigerian Territorial Waters but is also critical for information on Sea and Ocean Management for National Development.
Ibok stressed that the Nigerian Navy strived to develop the NMSC to provide soft landing for Blue Economy, sustainable growth and harnessing of the vast Ocean Resources in Nigeria.

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