Council, 116th Session, 4-8 July 2016
World Maritime Day theme for 2017: "Connecting Ships, Ports and People"
"Connecting Ships, Ports and People" was selected as the World Maritime Day theme for 2017 following a proposal by Secretary-General Kitack Lim to the Council.
Mr. Lim said the theme would provide an opportunity to work with developed and developing countries, shipping and public and private sector ports with a view to identifying and promoting best practices and building bridges between the many diverse actors involved in these areas.
Key objectives will include improving cooperation between ports and ships, and developing a closer partnership between the two sectors; raising global standards and setting norms for the safety, security and efficiency of ports, and for port and coastal State authorities; and standardizing port procedures through identifying and developing best practice guidance and training materials.
Indian tanker captain to receive 2016 IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea
Captain Radhika Menon, Master of the oil products tanker Sampurna Swarajya, is to receive the 2016 IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea for her role in the dramatic rescue of seven fishermen from a sinking fishing boat in tumultuous seas.
The Council endorsed the decision of a Panel of Judges that Captain Menon displayed great determination and courage in leading the difficult rescue operation in the Bay of Bengal in June last year.
Captain Menon was nominated by the Government of India, for the rescue of all seven fishermen from the fishing boat Durgamma, which was adrift following engine failure and loss of anchor in severe weather. Food and water had been washed away and they were surviving on ice from the cold storage.
Through wave heights of more than 25 feet, winds of more than 60 knots and heavy rain, on 22 June, the second officer on the Sampurna Swarajya spotted the boat 2.5 kilometres away, off the coast of Gopalpur, Orissa.
Captain Menon immediately ordered a rescue operation, utilising the pilot ladder and with life jackets and buoys on standby. It took three arduous attempts in the lashing wind and rain and heavy swells before all seven weak and starving fishermen, aged from 15 to 50 years old, were brought to safety on board the ship. Their families had already considered them to be lost at sea, but thanks to the rescue, led by Captain Menon, they were reunited with their loved ones a few days later.
Captain Menon is the first female captain in the Indian Merchant Navy and will be the first female to receive the IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea.
Maritime lawyer Dr. Frank Wiswall to receive 2015 International Maritime Prize
The prestigious International Maritime Prize for 2015 is to be awarded to Dr. Frank Lawrence Wiswall Junior, former Chair of the IMO Legal Committee and Vice-President (Honoris Causa) Comité Maritime International (CMI), for his contribution to the work of IMO over many years.
The Council decided to award the Prize, noting Dr. Wiswall's personal contribution to the work of IMO, leading IMO’s Legal Committee as it developed a number of key international treaties and holding important roles at various international IMO legal and diplomatic conferences.
As a lecturer at the International Maritime Law Institute (IMLI) in Malta and as a Member of its Governing Board from 1992 to the present, Dr. Wiswall has also made a significant contribution to the training of lawyers from around the world.
In nominating his candidature for the International Maritime Prize, the CMI said Dr. Wiswall had contributed greatly to the establishment of the uniformity of maritime law during his long and distinguished career as a practising maritime lawyer, academic and Vice-President of the CMI.