In order to curb the incessant cases of insecurity on Nigeria’s waterways, President Muhammadu Buhari has given the approval for the purchase of patrol vessels.
This was disclosed by Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo, on Friday, at the 10th Annual Ministerial Conference of the Fisheries Committee for West, Central Gulf of Guinea (FCWC) in Abuja.
Osinbajo said that the safety of the nation’s waterways remained one of the main priorities of the current administration, adding that it was determined to reduce fish imports into the country
He said that the efforts were already yielding appreciable results. He noted that within 2017, local fish production had increased from 450, 000 tonnes in early January to 1.1 million tonnes.
“The safety of Nigerian maritime is also a principal concern to us. President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the purchase of some patrol vessels for the Department of Fisheries, which would be managed with the collaboration of the Nigerian Navy.
“These vessels will boost the search and rescue capacities of the relevant security agencies, deter illegal fishing and help secure our vessels at sea,’’ he said.
Osinbajo disclosed that earlier this year, President Buhari also approved establishment of the Lake Chad Naval Base to boost security and fast-track the restoration of livelihoods in the zone.
He said: “The theme of this conference, which is to invest in the growth and sustainability of fishery in West Africa, is important; even in terms of sharing experience and laying aspiration for the economic well-being of our people.”