A former Speaker of Delta State House of Assembly, Victor Ochei, has been appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari as the Executive Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services in the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA.
Consequent to the expiration of the tenure of the Dakuku Peterside-led board that was inaugurated on March 10, 2016, the appointment also comprises of a new Director-General and two other executive directors.
The former lawmaker, who hails from Onicha-Olona in Aniocha North Local Government Area of Delta State, was Speaker of the state assembly between 2011 and 2014 on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Findings also revealed that en route the 2015 general election, he contested the governorship primary of the PDP in December 2014. He, however, lost the race to Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, who emerged as the flag bearer of the party for the 2015 election and the eventual executive governor of the state.
He would later contest the 2015 senatorial election to represent Delta North on the platform of the Accord Party. For the umpteenth time, he was unsuccessful.
Ochei also joined the All Progressive Congress, APC, shortly after the 2015 general elections and unsuccessfully helped to steer the ship of the main opposition party in Delta State from the crisis it found itself.
The crisis that rocked the APC in the build-up to the 2019 general elections, again, prevented Ochei from emerging the First Indigene of the oil-rich state.
Upon his appointment, the 51-year-old has, in various quarters, been touted a grassroots politician and vast in engineering, financial management, corporate governance, education administration and law.
In the meantime, residents and kinsmen of the newly appointed NIMASA Director have showered encomium on President Muhammadu Buhari for the appointment. They assured the president that the new appointee will discharge his duty with due diligence.
The appointment of Ochei follows the sack of two executive directors of NIMASA. It was gathered that President Muhammadu Buhari sacked the Executive Director of Operations, Rotimi Fasakin, and Executive Director of Maritime Labour and Cabotage Services, Gambo Ahmed.
In a related development, reports suggest that the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has said that he was not aware of the alleged removal of Peterside and his replacement by Bashir Jamoh.
Amaechi noted that he would be aware as the transportation minister if Peterside had been truly sacked, adding that he would be the one to formally intimate the DG if he is sacked.