The ceremony, which was held at the Academy’s Cadets’ Smoke Room also had as Nigeria Agip Oil Company (NAOC) and OANDO Oil Limited as co-signatories to the agreement.
Acting Rector of the Academy, Ante Mkpandiok, who expressing appreciation to the partners on behalf of the management staff, cadets and students said it was heartwarming to see a dream come true.
Speaking on the importance of the joint-partnership in the training of cadets, Mkpandiok noted that the Academy’s core mandate remained the development of manpower for the country’s Maritime Industry and allied industries of which NAOC, OANDO and the NNPC were members.
He regretted that the institution had been denied basic instruments and professional trainings for efficiency and competitiveness in the global maritime sector.
Mkpandiok noted that the Academy lacked a national fleet, poor policy, training berths and ship, as well as dearth of survival training pool, poorly equipped e-library, and simulators.
He, however, expressed the hope that in view of the importance of the partnership, there was the need to improve the quality of its services. “We strongly believe that this will put us in a better position to continue to provide quality maritime training and education that competes favourably in the global maritime landscape,” Mkpandiok stressed.
Representative of the Managing Director of OANDO Oil Limited, Massimo Insulla, disclosed that the company has always been an active partner to youth manpower development from the host communities in particular and the Nigerian maritime sector in general.
He explained that, apart from the over 280 youths from the Niger Delta communities currently engaged in diverse training programmes, there were other components of the Eni Marine Capacity Development Initiative.
These, he said, include construction of a marine laboratory, comprising three workshops, simulation rooms, meeting rooms and offices in 2016, as well as practical sea-time training programme inaugurated in 2017.
On the joint-partnership with MAN, Insulla said: “The event is extremely important as it is the first in the history of capacity building programmes sponsored by the joint venture.”
Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, who was represented by the state controller of the ministry, Tonye Thom-Manuel, said he was happy over for the joint-venture initiative of the oil companies towards addressing critical needs in the maritime sector, especially as they concern training of youths from the host communities.
Director of MAN Consultancy Services (MANCONSULT), Kelvin Okonna, said the training programme, which has a complementary part of sea service on board a ship, was designed in collaboration with STWC and the Nigeria Maritime Adminstration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) template and guidelines.