Commission 4: Strengthening the African Hydrography ConFIGuration - 20/04/2012

Dr. Michael Sutherland (Canada, and Trinidad and Tobago), chair (2011-2014), Commission 4, International Federation of Surveyors (FIG)

Commission 4 began its 2nd year of the 2011-2014 term as at January 2012. Many activities are planned for this year, including participation in FIG’s major conference of the year – FIG2012 Working Week to be held in Rome in May.

Hydrography Awareness Workshop, Lokoja, Nigeria
In order to gain recognition for Hydrographers in Africa, Mrs. Angela Etuonovbe, chair, Commission 4.5 (Hydrography in Africa) organised a Workshop on Hydrography Awareness at the Confluence Beach Hotel, Lokoja, Nigeria. The workshop was held from 24 - 26 October 2011 and was attended by participants from Nigeria, Ghana and Canada. The theme of the workshop was ‘Hydrography and National Development’. Among the attendees were the deputy surveyor-general of Kogi State (representing the Governor) and the managing director, National Inland Waterways Authority (representing the Minister of Transport). The president of the Nigerian Institution of Surveyors and the president of the Surveyors Council of Nigeria were also present. Goodwill messages were received from the Nigerian Port Authority, Hydrographic Society of Nigeria and the Hydrographer of the Nigerian Navy. It was noted at the workshop that there is no institution in Africa offering Category A or Category B training in hydrography; that there are no strong institutional and legal frameworks that will enhance or facilitate the development of hydrographic practice in Africa; and that the few hydrographers in Africa work mostly in the oil Industry or the Navy. It is hoped that the workshop will be a starting point to begin to address these issues.

FIG Working Week 2012
Commission 4 continues to prepare to participate in FIG Working Week 2012 to be held in Rome, Italy from 6 - 11 May. Activities will include technical sessions, Commission meetings and social events.

Changes to Commission 4
Professor Jonathan Li, professor of Geomatics, Department of Geography & Environmental Management, University of Waterloo, Canada is now chair, Working Group 4.4 (Maritime and Marine Spatial Information Management). Dr. Bheshem Ramlal, head of Department, Geomatics Engineering and Land Management, University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago is now chair of Study Group 4.4.1 (Marine Spatial Data Infrastructure). Professor Li chairs the other study group (Study Group 4.4.2 - Remote Sensing of Coastal and Marine Waters).

Changes to IBSC
Dr. Keith Miller, senior lecturer, Department of Geomatics Engineering and Land Management, University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago has been nominated to replace the late Dr. David Neale as one of FIG’s four representatives on the FIG/IHO/ICA International Board on Standards of Competence for Hydrographic Surveyors and Nautical Cartographers (IBSC).

Last updated: 25/10/2020