Pictured in Saint Nazaire, France on August 30th 2013, this FPB 98 Mk.II patrol craft is the fourth OCEA boat constructed for the Nigerian Navy since 2012, including three other 24 metre FPB 72 Mk.II platforms which were commissioned into service in February 2013.
PHOTO CREDIT: SHIPSPOTTING
March 26, 2014
Determined to reduce acts of illegality on the Nigerian waterways, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has handed over three patrol boats to the Nigerian Navy to enhance its capacity in safeguarding the nation’s waterways.
The three patrol boats, which include one 32-metre OCEA (P101) named NNS DORINA and two 17-metre MANTA boats (P258) named NNS TORIE and NNS EGEDE (P259), were built in South Africa at the cost of N3.2 billion ($20 million).
This move, industry close watchers say, has multiple effects on the economy as a secured waterway results to the reduction of insurance cost on freight, reduced freight charges that would lead to the stable prices of goods in the market.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony, Habib Abdullahi, managing director, NPA, said the presentation of the patrol boats to the Nigerian Navy was a demonstration of the authority’s collaborative efforts with relevant government agencies to secure both offshore and onshore water fronts. He noted that the unique operational features and capacities of the boats would afford the Navy ample opportunities to further their search and rescue operations as they safeguard the waterways.
The NPA boss noted that the main purpose of investing in the acquisition of the boats was to enhance the capacity of the Navy in discharging its surveillance duties on the nation’s territorial waters, urging the service to make adequate use of the platforms for the purpose for which they were acquired.
He also disclosed that the authority, in collaboration with the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), was perfecting plans to rehabilitate the Forward Operational Base (FOB) of the Navy located at Takwa Bay to further support the service in achieving its surveillance function on the waterways.
While receiving the boats, Samuel Alade, a Rear Admiral and Flag Officer Commanding of the Western Naval Command, who represented the Chief of Naval Staff, said the donation of the three boats was timely owing to the recurring incidents of pirate attacks on cargo ships, illegal oil bunkering and crude oil theft on Nigerian waters.
According to him, proper utilisation of the three boats would help to keep the Nigerian maritime domain safe for economic activities, adding, “Therefore, we assure the port community that the Navy is committed to putting the boats into good use.”