- Chamber of Shipping commiserates with deceased families
As part of statutory obligations for safe shipping and cleaner oceans, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has dispersed a team, comprising Search and Rescue and marine accident investigation officers, to the scene of the incident involving the Majestic Rig which capsized in Warri, Delta State.
NIMASA revealed this in a press statement issued today, while the Nigerian Chamber of Shipping (NCS) has commiserated with the victims and families of the deceased seafarers.
According to NIMASA, the rig which belongs to Depthwize Nigeria Limited, has been operating on Nigerian waters for 7 years without the regulatory agency’s approval.
“Initial findings has confirmed that the ill-fated Rig is Panama Flagged and has been operating on Nigerian waters since 2016 without requisite approvals from the Agency.”
“The ABS Classed inland Water Drilling 232 feet-long Barge, with a rated drilling depth of 30,000 feet collapsed where it was been towed from N04, 30:34 / E00543:57 enroute Ovhor 21 that belongs to SEPLAT Oil field in Delta State.”
“NIMASA has initiated contact with the Clean Nigerian Associate, a conglomerate of all International Oil Companies (IOCs’) responsible for the cleaning of Tier 2 oil spill, to establish the level of spillage at the scene of the incident,” the NIMASA statement read.
The maritime regulatory agency also added that it is in communication with officials of SEPLAT Energy Limited chatterers of the ill-fated rig who are expected to officially report the incidence within 24 hours in line with the provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act 2007.
In a separate chat with News Diet, the President of Nigerian Chamber of Shipping (NCS), Alhaji Aminu Umar noted that an arbitration process has commenced to address the issue.
He, however, sympathized with affected seafarers and their families, even as he labeled the incident ‘sad’ and ‘unfortunate’.
“Following this development, NCS wants to emphasize that safety is key in shipping business. While arbitration is ongoing on the incident, we can’t comment on the incident. Nevertheless, it is a sad development and we wish that it never happens again. It is unfortunate,” Umar said.
According to sources, five Nigerian oil workers and one British expatriate lost their lives while many others are still missing following the accident at the company’s ‘majestic rig’ near Ovhor Oilfield.