The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola has disclosed plans of his Ministry to seek the support and buy-in of the National Assembly towards the establishment of Coastal Guard as part of efforts to enhance security along coastlines of the country.
The Minister made the disclosure when a delegation from the House of Representatives Committee on Marine Safety, Education and Administration led by its Chairman, Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim paid him a courtesy visit on Monday, 15th December, 2023 in Abuja, saying the establishment of a Coastal Guard has become very necessary given it’s place in the Nigeria’s maritime domain.
“Very soon, we will be coming to you to seek your support on Coastal Guards, which has become of paramount importance. There’s a need for executive bill to be considered and passed on this subject,” Oyetola stated.
Speaking further, the Minister requested his visitors to note that at a recent stakeholders engagement, participants and all constituted committees at the engagement identified and harped on the need for coastal guards. Hence, the request for the buy-in of the National Assembly through initiation of a bill or proposition of a legislation and subsequent support of the assembly.
The Minister pointed out that the establishment of coastal guards in the country will enforce maritime laws, generate revenue, create jobs, promote economic wellbeing , maritime security, aggregate peace, and will serve the purpose of international prestige.
On harnessing the abundant potentials of the marine and blue economy, Oyetola said stakeholders and industry players have postulated that the Ministry can generate trillions of dollars for the nation, adding that
harnessing the numerous potentials that abound in the sector can only be realised with the right enabling environment and infrastructure.
The coastal guards assured are critical to realizing these benchmarks within the blue economy.
Supporting this initiative, the Minister added, will translate to quick turnaround in terms of foreign direct investment,
coastal tourism and other deliverables.
“Yes, we have the potential, but we need to ensure we have the enabling environment, the infrastructure, so that we can get the result that we want,” the Minister revealed.
Appreciating the members for the visit, Oyetola stated that he does not take the visit for granted, pledging on behalf of the Ministry to cooperate and work harmoniously with the Committee. to achieve its desired goal of oversight functions
Speaking earlier, the Chairman, House Committee on Maritime Safety, Education and Administration, Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim said the Committee decided to pay the Minister the visit, so as to identify with him, with an overall objective of establishing an harmonious working relationship between the lawmakers, the Ministry and the Minister towards achieving the ideals of the Ministry as envisaged by President Ahmed Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda”
According to her, the 6-points Legislative Agenda of the 10th Assembly has economic empowerment and diversification as one of its priorities. This, the Chairman said, tallies with Mr. President’s goal of not taking courtesy calls for granted. While
commending the President for making maritime a veritable alternative source of revenue for the country, Khadija Bukar reiterated the support of the Committee, saying: “we will be your Ambassadors as you relate with the entire 369 members of the House of Representatives.” “Permit me to highlight the modus operandi of our engagement with you, your Ministry and your agencies, as we navigate the maritime space, all rolled around our key parliamentary functions of law-making, representation and oversight as follows: Passage of Bills, Oversight functions, Appropriation and Capacity Building”, the Chairman of the Committee added.
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