The Nigerian Navy ship, NNS Victory, has arrested the operators of an illegal marine academy on the Calabar water ways.
The alleged illegal school, ‘Flight Marine Safety Academy-Nigeria Merchant Navy Institute’, was said to be located at Obubra Local Government Area of Cross River State.
The suspects, Charles (45), and six students were identified as Bassey, Aja, Effiok, Mbei, Marcellinus, and Ogwu. They were said to have failed to produce evidence of school license.
Parading the suspects in Calabar, the Commander of NNS Victory, Commodore Frederick Ogu, said the suspects were arrested during a patrol on the National Inland Jetty Calabar as they were returning from maritime training in Cameroon.
On interrogation, it was discovered that the operators neither had a license from the regulatory body, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Academy, nor showed any evidence that their operations were legal.
“We arrested these people, who claimed to be principal head and students of Flight Marine Safety Academy-Nigeria Merchant Navy Institute located in Obubra Local Government Area, but without proven documents of license with the appropriate regulatory body. They claimed that they were returning from a maritime training in Cameroon.
“After the arrest, we interrogated them and the man who identified himself as Charles, claimed to be the Director of Studies of the school and later mentioned some big names in the state as members of the governing board in order to give credibility to the school.
“We have called those people mentioned but they all denied being board members or directors of any maritime school in the country. We have gone through their identity cards and other documents and discovered that they are not genuine; all the names on their documents are fraudulent”.
While receiving the suspects, the state Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), Mr. Benito Eze, said it was illegal for anybody to operate an academy of that standard, adding that if found culpable after proper investigations, the law would take its full course.
Speaking with newsmen, the prime suspect, Charles said they were arrested while returning from Cameroon on a training, adding: “The school has been registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission and the State Ministry of Education with affiliation to Cross River University of Technology. Those people working as board of directors have now denied being connected to this school because they want to stay off, but there is no big deal.”
He said that other persons arrested on board were students of the institute and had nothing to do with the management of the school.
( Courtesy The Sun & Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps ….. Source …. Our Freelance Contributor in Lagos & New Africa Business News )