Presidency orders the re-opening of the Maritime University in Okerenkoko

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[Abuja]–The Nigerian presidency has ordered the reopening of the Nigerian Maritime University in Okerenkoko,Delta State.

According to Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant to the Vice-President on Media and Publicity, the move was part of the Niger Delta New Vision of the present administration, which is in line with the demands made by major stakeholders in the region.

He further revealed that the implementation would be coordinated by a 5-man inter-agency Committee headed by the Minister of Education,Mallam Adamu Adamu.

Other members of the Committee will be drawn from the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, National Universities Commission (NUC), NIMASA and Office of the Deputy Governor of Delta State.

The Committee, which is to  collaborate with the current principal officers and the governing council of the institution, will  finalize processes towards the opening of the university in the 2017/2018 academic session.

It should be recalled that the maritime university was conceived in 2012 by the Jonathan administration with the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency ( NIMASA) as its main administrator.

Its temporary site at Kurutie was formally opened on May 19,2014 by ex-President Goodluck Jonathan who also performed the ground breaking of the permanent site on the same day.

It was due to take off in the 2015/16 academic session but the change in government in the aftermath of the 2015 election brought about a policy reversal.

The Federal ministry of transportation decided against it, prompting wide spread protests from stakeholders including youths who cited the decision as one of their reasons for resuming hostilities in the region.

After several peace talks with various stakeholders from the region, the Nigerian Senate earlier this week passed the bill for the establishment of the university following the report of the Committee on Tertiary Education and TETFUND, chaired by Barau Jibrin (APC-Kano).

Currently, the Constanta Maritime University in Romania currently makes about €1.5 million (over N500 million at current rate )per year from Nigeria through scholarship granted by Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, to over 300 Nigerian students a few years ago.

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