There are strong indications that, for the first time since Africa’s biggest annual maritime event commenced four years ago, President Goodluck Jonathan will attend this year’s edition of the Nigeria Maritime Expo (NIMAREX) in person as Special Guest of Honour.
Top Federal Government officials and close aides of the President, it was learnt, have been working hard juggling his schedule in order have him grace NIMAREX 2014.
It was gathered that NIMAREX is quite dear to the President’s heart, bearing in mind that his administration is very supportive of the maritime sector.
With the confirmation of Nigeria’s former Military President, General Ibrahim Babangida, in the position of the Chairman of the fourth edition of the annual Nigeria Maritime Expo (NIMAREX) secured, the NIMAREX 2014 Planning Committee is moving relentlessly towards successful organisation and hosting of this year’s event at the Expo Centre, Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, March 10 – 12, 2014.
Babangida’s Co-Chairman is the President of the African Union (AU), Nkosazama Dlamini-Zuma.
Nigeria is in her centenary year, and theme of NIMAREX 2014 is aptly 100 Years of Maritime Development in Nigeria.
The Planning Committee has secured the confirmation of a slew of top rank speakers at NIMAREX 2014, including Chairman, Board of Directors, Federal Ocean Terminal (FOT), Onne, Rivers State, Dr. Chris Asoluka; Director, Shipping Development, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Captain Warredi Enisuoh; Chief Executive Officer, Starzs Investments Company Limited, Mr. Greg Ogbeifun; and Professor Dele Badejo of the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye, Ogun State.
As the exhibition holds on the sidelines, NIMAREX 2014 conference schedule will kick-off with the paper General Review of Nigeria Shipping and Ports Development (1914 – 2014) by Asoluka.
The first paper on the second day of NIMAREX 2014 will be Maritime Security and Safety in the Gulf of Guinea by Enisuoh, while Chairman and Co-Chairman, respectively, of the session are the NIMASA Director-General, Mr. Ziakede Patrick Akpobolokemi, and Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ambassador Ayo Oke.
The paper discussants include Chief of the Naval Staff, Nigerian Navy (NN), Vice Admiral Usman Jibrin; Chairman, Century Group of Companies, Mr. Ken Etete; Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) Mr. David Shikfu Paradang; Inspector-General, Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Mr. Mohammed Dahiru Abubakar; and Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Alhaji Dikko Inde Abdullahi.
The second day’s other paper is Challenges of Maritime Capacity Development by Ogbeifun, with Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mallam Habib Abdullahi; and NISA Chairman, Chief Isaac Jolapamo, as Chairman and Co-Chairman of Session, respectively.
To discuss the paper are Rector, Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN), Oron, Mr. Enum Joshua Okpo; Mr. Jack Langrishe of Pacific International Lines Nigeria Limited; Managing Director, NigerDock Nigeria Plc, Mr. Anwal Jarmarkani; Deputy Director, Maritime Safety, NIMASA, Engineer Vincent Udoye; President, Nigerian Association of Master Mariners (NAMM), Captain Adegboyega Sahib Olopoenia; and Group Managing Director, Slok Group,Mr. Joseph Nassif.
Just before lunch break, there will be a special presentation on Ship Building and Repairs by the Nigerian Naval Dockyard Limited, Lagos.
The paper Maritime Transportation and International Trade: The Nigeria Experience by Badejo, opens the third and final day of the conference, and the session will be moderated by Executive Secretary, Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Mr. Hassan Bello, Chairman.
Co-Chairman of Session is Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Engineer Andrew Yakubu, while discussants include Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi; Director, Commercial Shipping Department, NSC, Mrs. Dabney Shall-Holma; Managing Director, Maersk Nigeria Limited (MNL), Mr. Jan Thorhauge; former Acting Director-General, Nigerian Institute of Transport Technology (NITT), Zaria, Kaduna State, Dr. A. G. Sumaila; President, Dangote Group of Companies, Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Managing Directors of Skye Bank Plc, and Fidelity Bank Plc, respectively, Messrs Kehinde Durosinmi-Etti, and Nnamdi Okonkwo; and Chief Executive Officer of Sahara Energy, Mr. Tonye Cole.
Later, same day, Managing Director of Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas Limited (NLNG), Mr. Babs Omotowa; and the NNPC Group Managing Director are expected to give their respective perspectives on the topic: Oil and Gas Exploration in Nigeria: Economic and Environmental Issues.
Chairman of Session is the Minister of Environment, Mrs. Lawrencia Laraban Mallam, while Co-Chairman is former Group Managing Director, NNPC, Mr. Gaius Obaseki.
Those to discuss the papers by the NLNG and the NNPC bosses are the Director-General, Energy Commission of Nigeria, Professor Eli Jidere Bala; the Director-General, National Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), Sir Peter Idabor; the Managing Director, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Mr. Stephen Olabisi Onasanya; United States (US) Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador James Entwistle; Managing Director, LADOL, Dr. Amy Jadesimi; Managing Director, Afrik Delta Marine Limited, Mr. Jamie Stewart; and Managing Director, Sterling Bank Nigeria Plc, Mr. Razack Adeyemi Adeola.
In its fourth year and billed for what has become its traditional home, the Expo Centre, Eko Hotel and Suites, NIMAREX 2014, according to the Planning Committee, promises exhibitors, conference participants and all other attendees to be better-organised and so much bigger than past editions.
The Chairman of NIMAREX 2014 Planning Committee, Mrs. Margaret Onyema-Orakwusi, said: “We are leveraging on the experiences of the past editions of NIMAREX to put up a truly world-class event this year. Within its few years of existence, NIMAREX has climbed to an enviable position in the international maritime calendar. NIMAREX can only continue on the path of excellence as the years grow; that is the burden of success.”