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Can Senate’s fury foil Peterside’s second term at NIMASA or another factor?

Since yesterday, Wednesday, March 04, 2020, which is just six days to his end of first term, two conspiracy theories have emerged within the Nigerian maritime circle all pointing to the fact that the current Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Ama Opusenibo Dakuku Adolphus Peterside, may not get President Muhammadu Buhari’s nod for a second term at the federal agency.

First of all, recall that he was appointed in March 2016 and his tenure elapses March 10, 2020 which is Tuesday next week.

Whereas the first theory links the scarce nod to the ongoing battle between the Senate and the DG over nonappearance on investigative hearing, the second lack of presidential nod for his reappointment is linked to what many maritime stakeholders see as continued northernisation of the Maritime agencies as there are strong indications that Bashir Jamoh, who hails from Kaduna, may have been pencilled down, if not substantially appointed as the new DG.

Jamoh, currently the Executive Director for administration and finance at NIMASA, is also the current president of the Chartered Institute of Transport Administration of Nigeria (CIoTA).

Though unconfirmed report suggests that the 56-year-old holds a PhD graduate from the University of Port Harcourt, specialising in logistics and transport management, may have received the presidential nod after all.

Whereas leading maritime experts say the current administration under President Muhammadu Buhari, will make the height of history as having appointed two indigenes from same state to head two sensitive and money spinning maritime agencies; NIMASA and NPA, others say the entire politics of who replaces Peterside remains in utmost secrecy even as time ticks very closer.

On the other negligible conspiracy theory, analysts say because of his near belittling of the almighty Senate by remaining in Lagos to honour the visit of House of Representative Committee, the presidency may be cabled to turndown his reappointment.

Recall that the Senate Joint Committee on Navy, Marine Transport and Finance has threatened to arrest the Director-General, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Dakuku Peterside, if he fails to appear before it on Thursday this week after waiting in vain for him on Tuesday, March 3, 2020.

The committee is investigating the N263.9bn alleged illegal security services carried out by Ocean Marine Solutions Ltd at the Safe Anchorage Area in Lagos Ports and checks have suggested that the outgoing DG had failed to appear before the panel but was represented at the hearing by the Principal Legal Officer of the agency, Haruna Argungu, whom the Senators walked away and threatened to declare Dr Peterside wanted.

Besides, there are strong indications that if he loses second term bid, he may run to the murky waters of the EFCC if the already angry Senate Committee consider it as option so as to have time to handle other matters.

However, experts say it has been very difficult to place the two conspiracy theories side-by-side with a possible reappointment and chose a better option without scratching ones head seriously.