The National Emergency Management Authority, on Tuesday, in Calabar seek for more collaboration with the Nigerian Navy in the area of disaster management.A statement by Acting Base Information Officer, Sub-Lt. Chris Gaga, said the NEMA Director General, Mustapha Ahmed, made the appeal through a delegation to NNS Victory in Calabar, led by Mr. Fortunatus Anyanwu.
In the statement on Tuesday, the director general expressed the agency’s gratitude for the swift response by the navy during a boat mishap that led to the deaths of some medical students.
On Saturday in Calabar, a gunboat belonging to NNS VICTORY responded swiftly to a distress call and rescued 14 persons, including students of the Nigerian Medical Students Association.
The heroic act has attracted commendations from several quarters, including Gov. Bassey Otu of Cross River and the State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association.
They expressed confidence in the capacity of the Nigerian Navy.
The director general maintained that the navy remained a critical stakeholder in search and rescue operations, particularly in the maritime environment and other disaster management in the country.
He recalled the crucial role played by the navy in rescue operations, movement of relief materials, and distribution of palliatives to flood victims in 2022.
“This further reiterated the effectiveness of navy units as part of the architecture for disaster response management in the country.
“The National Emergency Management Agency will always seek the support of the Navy in disaster management,” he said.
In his response, the Commander, NNS VICTORY, Commodore Vincent Gbaranwi, reaffirmed that the navy would continue to provide safety and security to lives and property in the nation’s maritime ways.
He assured the representative of the director general of NEMA that search and rescue was one of the statutory mandates of the navy and a major component of the Chief of the Naval Staff Strategic Directives.
While commending the men who took part in the rescue efforts, the commander advised seafarers to always adhere to basic maritime safety requirements to forestall such distress situations.
It was reported that the bloated bodies of the three medical students declared missing following the boat mishap on Saturday were recovered on Monday.