TACLOBAN CITY- The National Maritime Polytechnic (NMP) has announced the temporary suspension of some of courses it is offering. This was disclosed by NMP executive director Forter Puguon who said that temporary suspension of the courses was made pending results on the assessment of their compliance and accreditation from the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA). The suspension was enforced since September 22, 2014 which includes courses on engine, deck, safety medical and security, environmental protection and maritime allied, while still offering faculty development courses. “We are closely looking into reviewing all the requirements including facilities, the trainors and of course the courses itself,” Puguon said in a press conference held at their office located in Barangay Cabalawan, this city.
Puguon added that they had a meeting with MARINA on July 31 of this year and requested for an inspection so that they will know what are still needed. During the inspection it was found out that some of the courses lack some requirements prompting MARINA to temporarily suspend its trainings while complying with the requirements. “As to our view we can continue conducting but they have the final decision. We have to respect their decision to suspend. But MARINA respected our trainings up to September 19 this year,” Puguon said. Puguon said that there are still other maritime training schools in other parts of the country although NMP is the only such facility that is run by the government. More than 50 percent of the trainees of the NMP are from the region while the rest are from Central Visayas and Mindanao regions.
“More than fifty percent of our seafarers are from Eastern Visayas followed by Cebu which comprise twenty five percent then Mindanao around ten to fifteen percent while others from different places in Luzon, they are the ones fully affected by the devastation and while waiting for our efforts to restore its full operation,” Puguon said.
Puguon added that seafarers chooses NMP for maritime training because not only because due to its low fees but due to its good quality and high standard services. The NMP has submitted its application for accreditation to MARINA August of last year which the latter has yet to take action. He further added that NMP is now having a problem on how they can refund the money of those who already paid for the training. He said that NMP has an annual master list schedule of trainings. And there were clients who already paid and scheduled their trainings up to December this year. “Our problem now is how we can return the money to those who already paid for the trainings up to December and they cannot wait when we can fully operate. How can we return their money that we already submitted to the Bureau of Treasury, and we could not get that easily,” Puguon said. Puguon assured their clients that NMP will resume its services once they comply all the needed requirements adding that they are now fast tracking its rehabilitation after the devastation of Yolanda. (JENNIFER SUMAGANG-ALLEGADO)