20 Oct 2015 15:50pm
WALVIS BAY, 20 OCT (NAMPA) - There is a need to introduce a curriculum on maritime education at primary and secondary levels in Namibia.
Deputy Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Chief Samuel Ankama said this in his opening speech at the maritime logistics seminar underway here on Tuesday.
Such a curriculum will enhance the sea understanding of our learners at a young age and encourage them to value our marine resources and take up careers in the industry. It will further help us develop our fishing industry as our own students will be well trained, said Ankama.
He said there is also a need to further establish a bigger and better institutions to offer maritime courses in addition to the current Namibian Maritime and Fisheries Institute (NAMFI) at Walvis Bay.
NAMFI is a tertiary educational institution which offers navigation, engineering and safety courses.
We have very few seafarers in Namibia. When do we introduce institutions which train more Namibian youths to become seafarer? Ankama asked.
He noted that a draft Bill which seeks to elevate NAMFI from just a simple institution to an internationally recognised institution will soon be tabled in Parliament.
The Bill will allow NAMFI to be instituted by an Act of Parliament so that it can be elevated to international standards. As such, the institution will be able to work with global marine institutions with better expertise. This will drastically improve human resources development in the maritime industry, said the deputy minister.
The four-day seminar hosted by Namibia and Finland is aimed at developing cooperation and capacity building between the maritime clusters of the two countries.
Ankama said Namibia is still a developing country and needs expertise from countries such as Finland to assist, train and educate citizens in order to successfully run the fishing industry.
The seminar is being attended by the Namibian Ambassador to Finland Bonny Haufiku, Finnish Ambassador to Namibia Anne Saloranta, and close to 30 representatives from the Polytechnic of Namibia, Satakunta University of Applied Sciences in Finland, NAMFI and the Walvis Bay Corridor Group, amongst other institutions.