Tinubu’s 1st anniversary: Appraising Oyetola’s exploits in Blue Economy Ministry

By Jimoh Olorede

Between May 29, 2023, when Asiwaju Bola Tinubu assumed office as newly elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and May 29, 2024, which marked his first anniversary, Nigeria has not remained the same in terms of the socio-economic policy thrust of the present administration, which has always been solution-driven towards problem-solving.

Tinubu’s scenario exemplifies the case of a lame man whose beholders blame for his awkward posture and position of load on his head, and who replies by saying “You’re only looking at my head if you had taken a keen observation, you would see that my awkward position is causative of my lame legs beneath my body,” meaning the present administration is seriously grappling with maladministration problems of the previous governments, who came on board, saw the humongous systemic-problems, and window-dressed them until the expiration of their tenure in office.

However, the President has been working hard ‘treating the wounded (lame) legs’. One of the best ways to assess the performance of the President is by appraising the level of adherence of his ministers and their ministries to the terms of reference of their engagements.

Consequently, the writer chose not propagandist ministers, who are professional spin-doctors and hype-makers with sensational politics of spectacles, and instead, chose the helmsman of the Ministry of Marine and Blue Economy, Mr Adegboyega Oyetola, a Minister, who is somewhat taciturn and reserved, who always walks his talks, but hardly talks (about) his works or counts his laurels, as he believes in working and not noise making.

Doing this, the piece appraises the exploits of the minister via the following yardsticks and spheres of performance, especially as the Tinubu-led government gives stewardship accounts on its first anniversary.


*Increasing revenue from maritime services

According to the Minister, the Ministry of Marine and Blue Economy generated a whooping sum of N242bn in the first quarter of this year, 2024, representing a 92 per cent increase in the ministry’s revenues compared with the previous year. The Minister, through his ministry, was able to attract more business and generate higher revenues by improving efficiency and capacity in ports, shipyards, and other maritime services.


*Maritime trade facilitation

Some of the hindrances against efficiency and better revenue generation in the ministry, and in whatever other ministries whatsoever are bureaucracy and unnecessary administrative bottlenecks. By streamlining administrative processes and reducing bottlenecks, the ministry has been able to increase the volume of both intra-nation (within Nigeria) and international trade and revenues associated with it.

READ ALSO: Egypt’s Sisi, Blinken agree to intensify efforts toward Gaza ceasefire

*Shipbuilding and ship repair

Hardly would a country develop, if it had to import everything for its survival. The ministry has a department for shipbuilding and development in one of its agencies, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA). With this, the country generates revenue from exports and retains some of the funds that would have been spent on foreign importation of ships and their repairs when faulty.


*Year 2023 Inland Waterways Transportation Regulation

This document which guides boat operations, regulates passengers’ conduct, and provides a framework for investors in water transportation, was gazetted under the headship of Mr. Bola Oyebamiji, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and launched by the Minister, Oyetola.


*Fibre-reinforced plastic fast-moving boats

These are newly built pilot scheme boats innovatively designed to replace wooden canoes to reduce accidents on waterways. Twelve of these types of boats await commissioning at NIWA by the honourable Minister this week.


*Water ambulances

Three water-built ambulances have been procured and will also be inaugurated for operation by Oyetola this week at NIWA. The purpose of the procurement of the ambulances is mainly for search and rescue operations on inland waterways.


*Providing an alternative to over-reliance on oil

With the development of a blue economy, which is capable of generating trillion in revenues, the ministry provides a unique diversification of our economy. This will automatically reduce Nigeria’s reliance on oil exports and increase the contribution of the marine sector to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The Minister has recorded exploits given the miles he has covered in terms of records of achievement in the new ministry. Also on his strides of performance is the modernisation of Apapa and Tin Can Ports, rehabilitation of eastern ports, dredging of inland and coastal waterways, development of Inland Dry Ports, development of fisheries and aquaculture, promotion of coastal and marine tourism, capacity building for maritime security and surveillance, upgrade of maritime infrastructure and equipment, and strengthening of maritime regulations and enforcement, among others.

*Dr Olorede, an institution’s Head of the Strategic Communication and Media Studies Department, writes via: [email protected]

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please turn off Adblocker or whitelist this website in your Adblocker to enable us display ads