July 23, 2024

KMA Demands for Strict Adherence to Safety Navigation

Martin Dzombo Munga Director General Kenya Maritime Authority addressing the Media in a past event. (Photo By Mwakwaya Raymond)

By Harrison Kivisu

Email, thecoastnewspaper@gmail.com

The Kenya Maritime Authority (KMA) has asked Kenyan seafarers, recruitment and placement agents and ship-owners to stick to the requirements of the Merchant Shipping Act which provides adherence to safety on navigation.

Compliance to safety standards at sea  requirement protects the reputation and integrity of the maritime operators and their clients.

According to KMA director general Michel Dzombo the agency has stepped up compliance exercise to the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC), 2006, to reduce cases of abandonment or breach of seafarers’ employment agreements.

“The authority has continued to intervene in various cases of abandoned seafarers both Kenyan and foreigners through collaboration with Port States, Flag States and social partners. 

On this respect, the Authority urges Kenyan seafarers, Recruitment and Placement Agents for Seafarers and Ship-owners to adhere with the requirements of the Merchant Shipping Act, Cap. 389.”

KMA has licensed 17 of recruitment and placement agencies for seafarers in accordance with Reg.1.4 of the MLC as amended and Section 118 of the Merchant Shipping Act, 2009.

The authority has also stepped up inspection to ensure maritime institutions in the country are accredited and certified to provide quality maritime education and training to kenyans.

In his view, the authority has been on the forefront in creating awareness to seafarers and engaging ship-owners’ adherence of the Merchant Shipping Act.

“KMA also continues to work with partners to advance the Maritime Education and Training Curriculum to ensure Kenyan seafarers remain abreast with evolving trends in the competitive International maritime labour and crew market.“

“We are collaborating with the State Department of Shipping, the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection as well as other stakeholders in the development of a wage standard for Kenyan seafarers.

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Once a wage order is established, Kenyan seafarers will enjoy equitable pay for equal work onboard ships resolving the current disparity in wages of Kenyan seafarers and seafarers from other countries who have an established wage standard.”

KMA continues to work closely with the Seafarers Union of Kenya (SUK) in its members’ employment and welfare matters including dispute resolution between their employers and them in line with the tripartite spirit.

This is a spirit of collaboration between seafarers unions, their employers and the government in dealing with their welfare issues as prescribed by the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the MLC.”

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