Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) reported that the country is able to approve 40 conventions passed by the International Maritime Organisation and International Labour Organisation focusing on Maritime Safety, Labour and Marine Environment. Specifically, the non-implementation and enforcement of the conventions has been affecting investments in the country. So far, 19 of the conventions had been domesticated by way of regulation, adoption or incorporation under the Merchant Shipping Act of 2007.
According to Dakuku Peterside, director-general of NIMASA, spoke in Lagos during the 8th Strategic Admiralty Law Seminar for Judges in conjunction with Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS).
The director-general highlighted that it is a difficult task to sell Nigeria to the international community for investments, because many were the times when investors were uncertain in dispensation of litigation and implementation of laws.
He also added that the agency is working close with the Federal Ministry of Transportation under the auspices of an Inter-Ministerial Committee to ratify an additional six IMO conventions before the end of 2019 to ensure that Nigeria as an IMO member state fulfills its treaty obligation.
Specifically, the conventions are:
- The Hong Kong International Convention for safe and environmentally sound recycling of ships 2009;
- Protocol Relating to Intervention on the high seas in cases of oil pollution casualties (Intervention Protocol) 1973;
- 1996 Protocol on limitation of liability for maritime claims (LLMC).
- 2002 Protocol relating to the carriage of passengers and their luggage by sea (PAL) 1976;
- International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Fishing Vessel Personnel (STCW-F) 1995;
- Protocol of 2005 to the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Act against the Safety of Maritime Navigation.
Moreover, NIMASA cooperates with stakeholders under the IMO Mandatory States Audit Scheme Corrective Action Plan Committee to make sure that all questions raised in the 2016 IMO report on Nigeria’s maritime sector were addressed before the Q1 of 2019, aiming to boost Nigeria’s re-election bid into Category ‘C’.
Concluding, concerning maritime security, NIMASA secretary-director addressed that the agency aims to criminalise piracy and other maritime offences.