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Dakuku NIMASA boss pleads for better coverage of maritime sector

He advised NAN to lay more emphasis on maritime reporting in order to move the economy forward.

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Dr. Dakuku Peterside, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) boss.

(Gist Arena)

The Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Dakuku Peterside, on Monday urged the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) to consistently portray NIMASA and the maritime sector in good light.

Peterside made the plea while receiving the Managing Director of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Mr Bayo Onanuga, at the head office of NIMASA in Lagos.

He advised NAN to lay more emphasis on maritime reporting in order to move the economy forward.

According to him, the maritime sector is the second most important sector of the economy, aside side from oil and gas; in terms of employment of people and in terms of contribution to the revenue.

``If that sector that contributes so much revenue is portrayed in bad light, the rest of the world would not want to deal with us.

``When NIMASA is painted in bad light, many countries would not want to deal with us.

``Is about those of us in NIMASA; is about the far-reaching implications on the economic fortune and agenda of the nation.

``Thank God, we have the current leadership and people in NIMASA implementing the bigger agenda of Change in the maritime industry,’’ NAN quotes the director-general as saying.

He said, ``The long-term interest of Nigeria requests that we report NIMASA and the maritime sector in a good light.’’

``More than ever, the Nigerian economy is at a crossroad.

``If there is a time for us to be proactive in presenting our country to the rest of the world to ensure we maximise the benefits of good communication, it is now,’’ NAN quotes Peterside as saying.

The director-general said that all local media relied on NAN, adding that ``if NAN provides information, they (media) would not have that leverage to fill in the gap for us’’.

Peterside said, ``When NAN is not providing information in a timely manner, they (media) would fill in the gap for us.

According to him, nobody will be a more authoritative source of information than the News Agency of Nigeria.

``I believe NAN is online, real time all the time. So, as the news is breaking, NAN is reporting what is going on,’’ he said.

Peterside explained that the NAN platform would serve the mutual interest of both organisations.

``Now, we have a leadership in NAN that we can trust and a leadership we are sure will deliver result,’’ he added.

On his part, the NAN managing director said that the agency had over 500 reporters, adding that no newspaper had that population, because they could not afford the expenses of having reporters all over Nigeria.

Onanuga said that the ability of the agency to cover the entire country was at huge costs.

He said that he was very positive that Peterside, as the helmsman of NIMASA, would turn the agency positively around.

According to the NAN managing director, NIMASA has been having bad news about its past not about its present.

Onanuga invited Peterside to the NAN Forum, a programme designed to capture the activities of NIMASA.

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