Nigeria bans ships without thermal screening, order less worker on offshore platformsChristian Fernsby ▼ | March 30, 2020
Dr. Bashir Jamoh, Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA, said the agency has developed guidance to support ships that operate in the Nigerian maritime domain, including banning all vessels without thermal screening facilities from operating in Nigerian waters.
Dr. Bashir Jamoh Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency
Topics: Nigeria ban ships worker
He also said that the agency plans to produce a publication to elaborate on the guidancem which also includes schedule for ongoing offshore operations.
Nigeria's petroleum regulator has ordered oil and gas companies to reduce their offshore workforce and move to 28-day staff rotations as part of measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus, according to a circular seen by Reuters.
Health experts fear a widespread outbreak in Africa's most populous country, which has about 200 million inhabitants, and the country is keen to protect oil production, which provides 90% of much-needed foreign exchange.
A coronavirus case on an offshore rig could spread quickly among workers and have a potentially devastating impact on production.
Sarki Auwalu, director of the Department of Petroleum Resources, said that only staff on essential duties would be allowed to travel to offshore or remote locations.
"Non-essential staff currently at offshore/remote locations should be withdrawn with immediate effect," he said in a statement.
Nigeria, which has 97 confirmed coronavirus cases, has shut international airports, closed all land borders and imposed curbs on cargo vessels allowed to dock at its ports in an effort to contain the outbreak. ■