NIMASA is a government organization charged with the responsibility of regulating Nigeria’s maritime industry. Due to the kind of task it shoulders, the staff at this agency are paid well enough to ensure safety on the water. However, the NIMASA salary structure has recently been controversial as it is largely assumed that its workers are not paid well enough to enable them to afford the luxurious lifestyle other staff in similar government agencies enjoy.
What is the Full Meaning of NIMASA?
The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA is a Federal Agency responsible for handling several responsibilities in the government, especially ones related to Nigerian shipping, maritime labor, and coastal waters.
The agency, formally known as the National Maritime Authority (NMA), is simply saddled with everything happening on the Nigerian sea and waterways. It is largely regulated by the Federal Ministry of Transport. Some of the key functions of the agency include to:
- Administer and regulate shipping licenses.
- Establish Maritime Training and Safety Standards;
- Administer, regulate and issue certification of Seafarers;
- Regulate the safety of shipping as regards the construction of ships and navigation.
- Enhance shipping and regulatory matters that are relating to merchant shipping and seafarers.
- Provide Maritime Search and Rescue Services
- Provide direction and ensure compliance with vessels’ security measures
- Carry out Air and Coastal Surveillance and perform Port and Flag State duties.
- Enhance Maritime Security and prevent Maritime Pollution
- Implement policies and programs that facilitate the growth of local capacity ownership and construct ships and other maritime infrastructure.
NIMASA Salary Structure
NIMASA is under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Transport and just like other agencies under the Ministry, it has a consolidated salary scale. This means that the staff at the agency are paid based on grade level and year of experience in the civil service. This is called the Consolidated Research and Allied Institutes (CONRAISS) Salary Scale. These salaries are not fixed and are, therefore, subject to changes at any time depending on the agency.
Breakdown of the NIMASA Salary Structure
- NIMASA Entry-Level Salary – NIMASA staff at the entry-level receive an average of N100,000 to ₦150,000 per month. This brings the average annual salary to fall between N1.2 million to N1.8 million.
- NIMASA Grade Level 7 (step 1) – NIMASA staff at grade 7 level are paid an average salary of N90,000 in a month, which sums up to over a million naira in a year.
- NIMASA Grade Level 8 (step 1) – NIMASA staff at grade level, 8 staff, up to ₦103,988 on monthly basis. This sums up to about ₦1,247,854 in a year.
NIMASA’s salary structure is largely considered quite attractive. Aside from the average salary scale listed above, the staff of this agency also receive bonuses and other additional allowances. However, the full detail of what each level of the agency gets as allowances has not been revealed.
In recent years, the staff of the agency called for a review of their pay scale and this has remained a debatable topic between the Minister of Transport and the agency. The minister, Rotimi Amaechi, kicked against increasing the agency’s call for a salary increase on the claims that the agency has in recent years, been “a cash cow” where everybody wanted to be posted there both for contract employment or political appointment. He insisted that maintaining the agency as a proper regulatory agency, instead of a contract awarding agency, will be more beneficial to all.
Departments in NIMASA
Since its establishment in 2006 by the association of the National Maritime Authority (NMA) and Joint Maritime Labor Industrial Council, NIMASA remains one of the top 100 Nigerian government agencies and an important player in the field of economic growth of the country. The Agency has a total of 17 departments out of which eight (8) report to the Executive Directors (EDs) and nine (9) Departments/Units report to the Director-General/CEO.
So, in general, the agency is structured into three Directorates of which each directorate is under the authority of an Executive Director. Each of the three directorates also has at least two Departments, headed by a Director. Following the agency’s operational functions, Zonal structures are then introduced to work with effective coordination of its activities in the four (4) maritime zones of the country (Nigeria). They include:
- Western Zone – Lagos
- Central Zone – Warri
- Eastern Zone – Port Harcourt
- Northern Zone – Abuja
As a government establishment, the ranking of staff in NIMASA is based on the structure of the civil service. This, however, is subject to the agency’s organogram. Below are the various ranks in NIMASA in ascending order.
Beneath the agency’s organogram are the three Executive Directors who are responsible for the affairs of other staff mainly those in Grades 6 and 7 ranks. Below is an outline of the Executive Directors and those they oversee:
Executive Director of Finance and Administration
- Director of Administration and Human resources.
- Director of Financial Services
- Director of Planning, Research, and Data Management Services
Executive Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services
- Director of Maritime Labour Services
- Director of Cabotage Services
- Head of Nigerian Seafarers Development Program
Executive Director of Operations
- Director of Maritime Safety and Seafarers’ Standard
- Director of Shipping Development
- Director of Marine Environment Management
At the top of the agency’s body, one will find the governing board with the Director-General being the Chairman and other key persons under him.
- Legal Adviser
- Head of Procurement
- Director, London Office
- Director, Zonal Coordinator
- Head of Nigerian Ship Registry
- Head of Corporate Communications
- Head of Protocol
- Head of SERVICOM
- Commandant of Maritime Guard Command
- Director of Internal Audit
How NIMASA Staff Get Promoted
Just like what is obtainable in all other establishments under the Nigerian Civil Service Commission, NIMASA staff get promotions based on merit. In most cases, those who are due for promotions to any level in the organisation’s organogram are mandated to write the promotional examination that is usually conducted on a yearly basis. Once a civil servant at the agency passes the promotional exams, he is given a promotion letter as well as all entitlements due for the new level.
In some cases, however, some important and vital traits exhibited by a staff can make him eligible for an unexpected promotion. These traits include:
- Good working behavior
- The appropriate qualification for the post
- Length of service (years of working experience)