Rotimi Amaechi, minister of transportation, says the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) was not set up as a revenue-generating agency.
He said the mandate of the agency was to act as a regulator of maritime safety and security.
According to a statement issued by Eric Ojiekwe, the ministry’s director of press and public relations, Amaechi said this at the final session of the 5-day National Council on Transportation (NCT), held in Kano state.
“People put NIMASA under pressure that they must make money; make money for what, NIMASA actually is a regulatory authority, not for them to go and look for money,” newsmen quoted Amaechi to have said.
“The people that should be making money and they must hear it now is the Nigeria Ports Authority. It is their responsibility to make money.
”NIMASA should therefore focus on being a regulatory authority on issues of safety and security of our waterways.”
On the Dala Inland Dry Port, the minister said the federal government would not commission the project until the concessionaire completes a primary school offering free education to the many out-of-school children in the area.
“I want NSC to note this because that’s the agreement we had with the concessionaire,” he said.
”Shippers’ council can charge whatever you want to charge for the dry port but part of the profit that they make in the dry port will go to the upbringing of those children.”
The transportation minister expressed dismay over the inability to convene the NCT for the past three years due to the economic downturn and the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He expressed optimism that critical decisions bordering on transportation would be addressed at the summit.
“Transportation is essential to sustainable development as it enables access to employment, business, education, health services and social interactions,” he said.
”The prosperity and wellbeing of developing and developed world are inseparably linked to transport.
”As such, President Muhammadu Buhari has made issues relating to transportation, one of the topmost priorities of his administration.”