FG to detain ships entering nation’s territorial water with foreign guards
By Godwin Oritse
LAGOS — THE Federal Government has said that it will not hesitate to detain any vessel entering the country territorial and coastal waters with security escorts on board, whether armed or unarmed.
The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, gave this warning when the agency detained three vessels, LILAC VICTORIA, UACC EAGLE and MORGANE, because they sailed into Nigeria with individuals linked to private security firms overseas offering training on the use of weapons.
The NIMASA Director of Shipping Development, Captain Warredi Enisuoh, said the agency was uncomfortable that vessels with high probability of entering Nigeria with disposable arms or ammunition were beginning to sail in shortly after the agency and other sisterly agencies had cleansed the Nigerian waters of scourges such as piracy.
Describing it as “a new threat” that now “looms over the horizon with possible far-reaching consequences,” Enisuoh warned ship operators, cargo owners, ship agents, among others that resultant interventions and delays may lead to possible forfeiture of their ships and cargo to the Federal Government.
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