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Nigeria mulls creation of coastal guards to secure waterways

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Adegboyega Oyetola, the minister of Marine and Blue Economy, says the Federal Government is exploring the possibility of establishing coast guards to ensure security on the nation’s coastline.

Mr Oyetola made the disclosure on Saturday at the 32nd Iragbiji day celebration, in Iragbiji, his home town, in Boripe Local Government Area of Osun.

”There is conscious efforts on security of marine environment. We have deployed security equipment to safeguard the waterways.

“We are already looking at the possibility of establishing coast guards which will be designed essentially to ensure the safety of our coastline.

“We have not less than 853 kilometres of coastline in Nigeria and about 10,000 perimeter of inland waterways.

“If we want to ensure coastal tourism, we must provide adequate security and we are working with the navy, marine police and others to ensure security of our waterways”, he said.

Mr Oyetola commended the traditional ruler of the town, Abdulrosheed Olabomi, for using the Iragbiji day celebration to attract development to the town in the last 32 years.

The minister, however, condemned the conversion of the Sustainable Development Goal-Focused Skilled Acquisition Centre built in the town by the Federal Government to a football camp by the state government.

”I am so unhappy that the same project that we fought for, for our youths to acquire skills, has been turned into a soccer base.

”I have no quarrel with football, but the facility must be used for the purpose it is made.

“The centre is meant for the acquisition of skills for youth and I want the state government to recognise that this project put in place by the Federal Government is for the benefit of the youths in acquiring skills,” he said.

In his remarks, the Aragbiji of Iragbiji, Abdulrosheed Olabomi, said the community had been using the money realised from the annual celebration to assist indigent students in the town.

Mr Olabomi said that the community paid for the West African Examinations Council, National Examination Council and Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination fees of 50 indigent students of the town from the money realised from the 2022 celebration.

The traditional ruler called on sons and daughters to support the community so that more indigent students could benefit.

He commended the minister for his support for the town all times.

NAN

 

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