Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa described the establishment of Nigeria Maritime University as a good move to improve the maritime industry assuring that his administration would partner in its development.
Governor Okowa who linked the level of unemployment among Nigerian graduates to conventional education that has little or nothing to do with acquisition of technical and vocational skills, called for retooling of the education system.
He spoke in Asaba when the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr Patrick Akpolokemi; the Pro-Chancellor of Maritime University, Okerenkoko, Prof. (Mrs) Viola Onwuliri; the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Prof. (Mrs) Ongoebi Etebu visited him on Friday June 5, 2015.
Okowa said: “With the birth of the Maritime University, there will be manpower development in the industry that will bridge the gap locally and export man power to the world.”
Speaking further the Delta Governor noted that, “we need to ensure that we add technical and vocational skills to our children’s education so that they can compete nationally and internationally, we are so used to conventional tertiary educational system and we need to return to the practical skills for which the polytechnics in particular were established.”
Governor Okowa then affirmed that “in Delta State, we will give emphasis on technical and vocational education where the students will acquire technical skills to enable them survive in the society, we will re-engage our children to believe in themselves and fend for themselves rather than depending on government for everything.”
While commending NIMASA for setting up the university in Delta State, Governor Okowa assured the management of the institution of his administration’s support and partnership and used the occasion to call on the Federal Government to tap the numerous benefits derivable from the waterways.
He particularly called for the dredging of the Escravos bar to enable large vessels to access the sea ports in the state.
Earlier, Dr Akpobolokemi had in his speech congratulated Governor Okowa for successful assumption of duty as Governor and called for the collaboration of the state with Federal Government for the development of the Maritime University, Okerenkoko in the state.
He disclosed that the university was established to bridge the manpower gap in the maritime industry, adding that the University was “a clear departure from the conventional university, it had para-military element.”
The delegation from the Maritime University also included the Pro Chancellor, and former Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Prof. (Mrs.) Viola Onwuliri, Vice Chancellor, Prof. (Mrs.) Maureen Etebu, as well as the Registrar, Mr. Lucky Ese-Nath and other members of the University management.