By Ajibola Abayomi,
The Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) Dr. Dakuku Peterside has stated that the agency was taking deliberate steps to work with the Judiciary.
The step too would be extended to the other arms of Government in order to reposition Nigeria’s maritime industry, by providing necessary updates on information and law in the maritime sector.
Peterside at the opening of the 7th Strategic Admiralty Law Seminal for Judges with the theme “ Towards effective Admiralty in a Blue Economy” organised jointly by NIMASA and the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS) in Lagos.
He said NIMASA had noted the complex and time sensitiveness of maritime issue and the consequent requirement for prompt resolutions.
“In initiating this event, the Agency is not unaware of the complex and time sensitive nature of maritime issues and their attendant requirement for speedy resolutions often through judicial pronouncements by superior courts of records.
“The scenario no doubt puts pressure not only on those entrusted with the responsibility of responding to the economic exigencies, but also on judicial officers responsible for balancing important notions of justice, contract and the law” he said.
The DG added that the objective of the seminar over the years has been to sensitize the target Judges on contemporary maritime law issues both within and outside the Nigerian Jurisdiction as shipping is a multi-jurisdictional enterprise.
According to him, it was in line with NIMASA’s commitment towards ensuring capacity building for critical stakeholders, the Agency decided to expand the scope of attendees to cover Justices of the Court of Appeal because of their critical roles in the dispensation of justice.
“This seminar was initiated by NIMASA for Judges of the Federal High Court bearing in mind the exclusive jurisdiction of the Court over Admiralty matters.
“Over the years however, the participating audience was expanded to include Judges of the State High Courts of littoral states of the Federation and now Justices of the Court of Appeal because of their critical roles in the dispensation of justice in admiralty matters” he said.
The DG opined that notwithstanding the stride being made by the Agency in the area of safety and security of the Nigerian maritime domain, the Management of the Agency equally recognize the need for increased partnership and collaboration amongst all stakeholders – the Judiciary inclusive, in the actualisation of our collective vision for environmental, social and economic growth and the sustainability of our shipping and maritime transport sector in a Blue Economy.
Earlier in his remarks, the DG NIALS, Prof. Deji Adekunle commended the NIMASA leadership for continuous collaboration with relevant stakeholders to advance the Nation’s maritime industry. He said the institute will continue to collaborate with the Agency and provide necessary assistance to NIMASA in its bid to ensure a safe and secure maritime space.