The Nigerian Maritime law (3)
NIWA’s mission statements, among other things, is to make Nigeria the leader in inland water transportation development and management in Africa. To provide regulatory, economical and operational leadership in the nation’s inland waterways system and develop infrastructural facilities for efficient inter-modal transportation system in line with global best practices that is safe, seamless and affordable. To improve and develop the inland waterways for safe navigation. Also, to provide alternative mode of transportation for the evacuation of economic goods and persons and to execute the objectives of national transport policy as they concern inland waterways.
NIWA issue licenses for inland navigation, piers, jetties and dockyard; examine and survey inland watercraft and shipyard operators, grant permit and licenses for sand dredging, pipeline construction, dredging of slot and approve designs and construction of inland river crafts. As part of its transport services, NIWA is equipped with a number of vessels, enabling it to operate ferry services (for economic good and passengers) and run cruise boats (for tourism and leisure). Many of the boats and ferries such as MF Oron, MF Onitsha and W.B. Jebba have been fully refurbished and deployed on their respective routes. With these exercises, NIWA has fulfilled one of its key functions of operating safe and efficient water transportation. NIWA’s wide range of engineering services includes construction of inland river-ports and jetties. NIWA also undertakes capital and maintenance dredging, and engineering, design of river ports etc.
As part of NIWA’s marine services, they remove and receive derelicts, wrecks and other obstructions from inland waterways; clear water hyacinth and other harmful weeds and NIWA has embarked on aggressive clearing of water hyacinth in Epe, Igbokoda and other northern waterways, boat construction, repairs and dockyard services (see the publication by Shehu Abubakar, The Weekly Trust, on Saturday, 24 March, 2012 and that of Weir Centre For Africa on April, 1, 2012). NIWA is responsible for hydrological and hydrographic surveys, river chart production and cartography, river mapping, aerial survey and underwater survey. Come ferry routes such as Calabar-Oron and Lokoja were successfully surveyed. Preliminary survey on River Niger has also been conducted in preparation for the dredging of the river. NIWA provides hydraulic structures for river dams, bed and bank stabilization, barrages, install and maintain lights, buoys and all navigational aids along all water channels and banks.
As general services, NIWA collects river tolls, acquire, lease and hire properties; produce, publish and broadcast navigational materials such as notices, hydrological year books, river charts and river maps; carry out consultancy and contractual services represent the Government of Nigeria at national and international commissions that deal with navigation and inland water transportation and also advise government on all border matters that relate to the inland waters. NIWA pursues an ecologically sound inland water transportation policy. Due consideration is given to the well-being of aquatic life as well as the clearing of water hyacinth and other harmful aquatic weeds. NIWA is also authorized to “carry out environmental impact assessment of navigation and other dredging activities within the inland water and its right of ways.” NIWA handles marine pollution control on the inland waterways and the declared Right of Ways (R.O.W). There is need to strengthen the capacity of the Authority in the area in terms of equipment and manpower.
In the area of port development, Lokoja Port work is in progress. Degema Port- certified awaiting Executive council approval. Onitsha Port- under tendering process. Baro Port- under tendering process. Okrika Port- certified project cost is in due process & awaiting ministry’s presentation to Federal Executive Council (FEC). Oguta Port- certified and awaiting Ministry’s presentation to Federal Executive Council (FEC) for award. Owerrinta Jetty- certified and awaiting Ministry’s presentation to Federal Executive Council (FEC) for award. Since inception in 1988, NIWA has executed the following projects:
• Charting and buoying of Lower River Niger River ( Lokoja-Onitsha);
• Satellite imagery of a section of River Niger;
• Charting and buoying of Upper Niger River (Zamare-Yelwa/Yauri-Nigeria/Benin border);
• Procurement of water weeds control equipment e.g. (“Water master Classic III”);
• Clearing of aquatic weeds/water hyacinth in the inland navigable waterways of Lagos, Ondo, Ogun, Rivers, Borno, Benue, Baga, Yelwa-Yauri and Cross River States;
• Construction of booms at Zamare-Rofia route (Kebbi State) for the control of water hyacinth and other aquatic weeds.
The Authority is currently combating the water hyacinth/ aquatic weeds menace in a number of areas within the country such as: Calabar, Yauri, Igbokoda and Lagos. Mechanical clearing is on at six different zones in the South-East and South-South part of the country. NIWA awaits the delivery of 2 nos AVC 101 swamp devil and 1 no complementary Harvester AH-620-T34 as part of our logistics requirement for clearing of water hyacinth and aquatic weeds nationwide.
On Friday, the 17th day of May, 2013, Hajiya Illa Maryam Ciroma who hails from Biu area of Borno state was appointed the new Managing Director of NIWA. Her name was made public by the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation following orders from President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan. Among the other responsibilities in front of her is the quest to concession Onitsha and other river ports has been on the drawing board for years. In fact, the idea to concession Onitsha river port popped up before its rehabilitation and formal unveiling by President Goodluck Jonathan on August 30, 2012. Since then the processes have been mired in bureaucratic bottlenecks. The lackadaisical attitude of those saddled with the responsibility has not helped matters. The present state of the multi-billion Onitsha River Port Complex, Anambra State is pathetic. This is due to the fact that the river port holds a lot of promise. It was this promise that propelled its conception, construction and formal unveiling. Described as Nigeria’s largest river port, the Onitsha River Port Complex is complete with new facilities, warehouses and equipment such as cranes and forklifts.
Yet, nearly one year after its formal unveiling by President Jonathan in the presence of the high and mighty in the society, the facilities are lying idle at the mouth of River Niger. What a monumental waste of scarce resources! Will the new managing director of the authority change the story of Onitsha river port or will it continue to be business as usual?
The intention to concession Onitsha River Port did not start today. Already, a consultant to midwife the exercise has been appointed to begin work on the outline business case (OBC) otherwise known as feasibility study.
One of the tasks staring the helmsman of NIWA in the face is the maintenance dredging of River Niger, which is crucial to the attainment of the primary goal of embarking on the multibillion naira project in the first place. This is not unconnected with the fact that without maintenance dredging, the billions of naira sunk into the dredging of River Niger will be like water poured inside a basket; an exercise in futility. Another reason why maintenance dredging must be carried out without further delay is siltation of the river bed. When this happens, it will not only impede safe navigation but also make nonsense of the entire dredging project. It is instructive to note that Ciroma has promised to make water transportation more attractive in her tenure.
Nigerian Shipping Policy
The Nigerian Shipping Policy can be defined as the totality of a set of government principles, plans of actions, statements of ideals and strategies proposed or adopted for the promotion and protection of our national interest in the field of shipping. Decree 10 of 1987 tagged “National Shipping Policy Decree” is part of the Nigerian Government’s strategic enactment in pursuance of her shipping interests.
Prior to Decree 10 1987, the main laws affecting shipping were the Constitution which gave the Federal Government responsibility for all matters concerning overseas trade and shipping; the laws of the Federation 1958 which among others adopted the British Carriage of Good by Sea Act 1924; the Ports Acts 1958, the Shipping Navigation Act 1958. After independence the Marina Insurance Act 1961 and the Merchant Shipping Act 1962 were adopted from British laws, while the Ports Act 1958 and Merchant Shipping Act 1962 were amended. Other Acts that were enacted before Decree 10 of 1987 include the Admiralty Jurisdiction Act 1963. In the decade immediately after the Nigeria Civil War, maritime related legislation covered port operations, River Basin Development Authorities and the Nigerian Shippers’ Council Decree of 1987. Other legislation before Decree 10 includes:
Carriage of Good by Sea Act 1958
Ports Act 1958
Shipping and Navigation Act 1958 (repealed by MSA 1962)
Ports Amendment Act 1961 (repealed by Decree No. 30 of 1971)
Admiralty Jurisdiction Act 1963
Oil in Navigable Waters Act 1968
Flags of Nigeria Ships Act 1968
Lagos Port Operations (Special Provisions) Act 1971
Merchant Shipping (Amendment) (No.2) Act 1978
Amendment No. 9 Act 1978
Pre-shipment Inspection of Imports Act 1978
Nigerian shipping industry relative to the major shipping nations is often referred to as being in its infant stage. There are two key Parastatals that exercise hegemony over the registration of vessels in Nigeria. These are: The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and Nigerian Maritime Administration of Safety Agency (NIMASA).
Over the years, these two authorities have undergone rigorous, meticulous, painstaking and thorough restricting by successive governments to augment their effectiveness. It expected that having commenced the registration of ships in the early sixties, reasonable growth is expected both in the administration and tonnage of Nigerian flagged vessels. Several factors contribute to the operation of an attractive registry including legislation, acceptability of flag by demand side of shipping, classification societies and P & Is, access to finance, low interest rate on ship finance, access to cargo, elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers to providers of shipping services, sophisticated insurance liability regime, political stability and reasonable security.
The Nigerian shipping industry is currently faced with a plethora of problems, the root cause of which stems out of:
Usurpation of powers by maritime agencies.
Clash of authority between maritime regulatory agencies.
The unending struggle for supremacy by these bodies.
Lacunas in the laws relating to shipping matters.
Nepotism and Corruption and host of other encumbrances.
The Nigerian ship registry is poised or is in point of fact, undergoing a major reform as some of the critical success factors have been satisfied while a confrontational approach is being attempted at resolving the other encumbrances. Part of the legislation promulgated by the National Assembly demonstrates the understanding by Government that a firm legislative regime is the substructure on which a competitive ship registry is built.
In this treatise, I shall attempt a brief, succinct, detail, doctored appraisal of the laws setting up NIMASA and NIWA focusing on the registration and licensing of vessels operating in Nigerian Inland Waterways with an aim at establishing if any the existence of a clash of authority between the two bodies and a basis for this occurrence and also attempt at proffering ways by which the jurisdiction of both parastatals can be streamlined.
The development of a sea port in Nigeria commenced in the mid 19th- century in the era of explorers and traders. Although limited initially to opening up the Lagos Lagoon, it however resulted in the opening of ports at Apapa and Port Harcourt. This led eventually to the establishment of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) in the year 1954 to maintain the ports as well as load and discharge cargo. The NPA commenced operation on 1st of April 1992; it made remarkable progress and on the 15th of June, 1992, the Nigeria Port Plc was incorporated. However, in consideration of its full government ownership while recognizing its commercial status, the company in October 1996, reverted to its former name-Nigerian Ports Authority.
The Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) today is a wholly Government owned organization under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Transport with the responsibility of providing specific ports and harbor services for the country’s maritime industry.
The Statutory duties and major functions of the company of the company are:
Provision and operation of cargo handling and quays facilities.
Pilotage and towage services.
Supply of water and fuel to vessels at anchorage or mooring buoys.
Repairs and maintenance of vessels.
Dredging and contract dredging of waterways.
Navigational lighting of the ports.
Other ancillary services.
In pursuance of government’s efforts to ensure the efficiency of public enterprises, the operations of Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) became fully commercialized in May, 1992.
Today, there are eight (8) major ports under the management of the Nigeria Ports Authority:
Apapa Port-Lagos, Lagos State Roro Port-Lagos, Lagos State
Tin Can Island Port-Lagos, Lagos State Container Terminal –Lagos, Lagos State
Port Harcourt Port-Port Harcourt, River State
Delta Ports- Warri, Delta State
Calabar Ports-Calabar, Cross River State
Federal Lighter Terminal, Onne, Delta.
Since 1st April, 1955 when it commenced operation, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has made remarkable progress and presently accounts for about 99.27 per cent by volume and 95 per cent by value of the total import and exports of the country.
Nigerian Ports Authority operates under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Transportation with the responsibility of providing specific ports and habour services for the country’s maritime industry. Today Nigerian Ports Authority controls 8 major ports excluding oil terminals with a cargo handling capacity of 35 million tones per annum.
Consequently upon the vantage location of the country within the West and Central African sub-region, Nigeria offers transit shipment services to her West Coast neighbors and therefore serves as the gateway to her land-locked neighbors.
CLASH OF AUTHORITY BETWEEN NIMASA AND NIWA
On the 31st of July, 2001, the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) published in the Daily Sun Newspaper a “Rejoinder” to the effect that there exist conflicts of authority between her the defunct National Maritime Authority which together with JOMALIC is today known as NIMASA.
The notice, which was published to all ship owners/operators within Nigerian Inland and Territorial Waters read thus:
“for the purpose of clarity the functional and statutory responsibility of National Inland Waterways Authority among others as provided under Section 9, (g), (h), (j), (k), (l) of Decree No. 13 of 1997 establishing the Authority is to exclusively approve, registered and control all jetties piers, crafts, barges, boats and ship operators, vessels including the registration and control of ALL VESSELS and other crafts outlined in the publication operating or plying INLAND WATERWAYS IN NIGERIA”.
WATERWAYS IN NIGERIA
The Authority, therefore, consider the notice as contained in the publication as an attempt by NMA to usurp the exclusive statutory powers/functions of the Authority relating to the registration of Vessels, Boats and Crafts plying the INLAND WATERWAYS OF THE DECLARED RIGHT OF WAYS OF THE NIGERIAN WATERWAYS.
By virtue of Decree No. 10 of 1987 establishing NMA under sections 4 and 5, which provides for the functions and special functions, none of the listed vessels, boats and crafts plying INLAND WATERWAYS OF NIGERIA is mentioned as part of their functions. The Authority therefore calls upon the general public especially the stakeholders in the maritime industry to ignore the notice calling for registration and physical inspection of craft, vessels, barges, piers, etc, plying inland waterways by the management of NMA, as such acclaimed powers are not within the specific jurisdiction and statutory responsibility of NMA in direct relationship with Declared Right of Way of the Declared Waterways”.
In addition, a memorandum from the Ministry of Transport, addressed to NIWA, was an attempt by the Ministry to resolve the conflict between the two bodies. The memorandum read thus:
We refer to the Streamlining Circular issued by this office on the 1st of April 2000 regarding the above captioned subject matter.
We note with regret that in spite of the said circular, conflicts still occur between the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) and National Maritime Authority (NMA) particularly in respect of the imposition and collection of Tariffs, especially as it relates to charges for Dredging, Shoreline Utilization and Land for Spoil Dump along the Right of Way of the declared Waterways, the Creeks and Lagoons.
This conflict has been relied upon by several Companies operating in the respected areas for not honouring the obligations to relevant Government Agencies and the consequence has been the potential loss to Government of billions of naira. Consequently, for the avoidance of any doubt whatsoever, I hereby direct that charges for the following activities, that is:
(ii).Shoreline Utilization along Creeks and the Right of Way of declared Waterways; and;
(iii).Land for Spoil Dump along the Right of Way of the declared Waterways; shall only be levied and collected by the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) in accordance with the Tariff of the Authority and approved by this office on the 16th day of March, 1998.
(4).All Companies and persons involved in the activities listed above are hereby notified of this directive, which should be complied with accordingly and immediately. Consequently, all field officers of various Parastatals under the Ministry are hereby directed to refrain from imposing or collecting the charges specified above as same are to be collected only by NIWA in accordance with Section 13 of the National Inland Waterways Authority Decree of 1997.
(5).All Companies operating within the area are hereby advised to pay all outstanding charges imposed on them for the above named activities by NIWA not later than 30th March, 2003.
(6).The Federal Ministry of Transport shall not hesitate to apply the severest sanctions on non-compliance with this directive.
Thus far, it is explicit that there had been conflict between the two agencies. And having examined the statutory provisions establishing them, the following findings are very helpful for the purpose of clarity and direction.
In the first instance, Section 9, (g), (h), (i), (j), (k), and (l) of Decree No. 13 of 1997 states the functional and statutory responsibility thus:
(g).issuing and control licensing for inland navigation, piers, jetties, dockyards;
(h).examining and surveying inland water crafts and shipyard operations;
(i).granting of slots and crossing of waterways by utility lines, waters intake, rock blasting and removal;
(j).granting licenses to private inland waterway operators;
(k).approving designs and construction of inland river crafts;
(l).approving and controlling all-
(i).jetties, dockyards, piers within the inland waterways;
(ii).advertising within the right-of-way of the waterways.
While Section 22 of the NIMASA Act 2007, states the function of NIMASA thus:
(i) The functions and duties of the Agency shall- be to :
(a).pursue the development of shipping and regulate matters relating to merchant shipping and seafarers ;
( b). administering the registration and licensing of ships ; .
(c). regulate and administer the certification of seafarers;
(d). established maritime training and safety standards;
(e). regulate the safety of shipping as regards the construction of ships and navigation;
(f). provide search and rescue service;
(g). provide directions and ensure compliance with vessel security measures;
(h). carry out air and coastal surveillance;
(i). control and prevent marine pollution;
(j). provide direction on qualification, certification, employment and welfare of maritime labour;
(k). develop and implement policies and programmes which will facilitate
the growth of local capacity in ownership, manning and construction of ships and other maritime infrastructure;
(I). enforce and administer the provisions of the Cabotage Act 2003;
(m). perform port and flag state duties;
(n). receive and remove wrecks;
(o). provide National Maritime Search and Rescue Service;
(p). provide Maritime Security; and
(q). establish the procedure for the implementation of conventions of the
22.- (2).Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the Agency shall :
(a). inspect ships for the purposes of maritime safety, maritime security,
maritime labour and prevention of maritime pollution;
(b). make enquiries as to shipwrecks or other casualties affecting ships, or as to
charges of incompetence or misconduct on the part of seafarers in relation to such casualties;
(c). administer policy for the development of shipping in general;
(d). provide on request services to the maritime industry on a commercial
(e). establish and manage maritime institutions for the training of officers of the Agency;
(f). generally to perform any other duty for ensuring maritime safety and
security or do all matters incidental thereto;
(g). provide consultancy and management services relating to any of the
matters referred to in this subsection; and
(h). perform any other prescribed functions relating to or incidental to any of
the matters referred to in this subsection.
ROUNDTABLE ON THE STRENGTHENING NIGERIA’S MARITIME RIGHTS: IMPERATIVES FOR ACHIEVING GLOBAL STANDARDS
Nigeria as a nation is endowed with a vast coastline as well as navigable inland waterways and is strategically placed on the Atlantic Coast of West Africa. For it to reap a bountiful reward from its maritime industry in promoting interregional and international trade, its maritime resources have to be properly harnessed. Nigeria is the sixth largest producer of crude oil in the world and also has some world’s most prolific gas reserves which have only been recently exploited. The country is also rich in natural resources and agricultural produce. Most of these products are exported to international markets by sea where they are sold and foreign currency earned to ensure the country’s developmental objectives. A virile and well organized maritime industry is therefore very important to facilitate Nigeria’s international trade.
In view of the foregoing the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, under the auspices of its Olisa Agbakoba Centre for Maritime Law, organized a Roundtable on the Strengthening Nigeria’s Maritime Rights: Imperatives for Achieving Global Standards. Participants and discussants at the roundtable were from the Nigerian Navy, the Nigerian Customs, the shipping companies, the academia, the Maritime Arbitration Association, lawyers and members of the public. Perspectives for the Roundtable include: Overview of the legal and Institutional Framework of the Nigerian Maritime Industry, the Maritime Industry in Nigeria as a Tool for Economic Development, the Role of the Nigerian Maritime Industry in promoting International Trade, Promoting Domestic and international Arbitration in the Maritime Industry, New and Emerging Developments in International Maritime Regulation and Issues and Current Trends in the Global Shipping Market.
The Roundtable made the following observations:
1. At the international level, the regulation of shipping is done through the International Maritime Organization, (IMO), which Nigeria became a member in 1962. In order to achieve its objectives, the IMO has promoted and adopted about 54 Conventions and Protocols, which every ratifying State is obliged to put into effect by making its requirements part of its national law and also put in place proper legislative and administrative machineries to ensure its enforcement.
2. The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) , formerly known as the National Maritime Authority (NMA) is the agency of the Federal Government established for the regulation of maritime activities and the implementation of both the international conventions relating to the maritime industry which Nigeria has adopted and the local laws and regulations on maritime activities.
3. With the passage of the Merchant Shipping Act of 2007 (MSA), which repealed and replaced the former Merchant Shipping Act of 1962, most of the International Conventions and Treaties on shipping which have been passed by the IMO and acceded to by Nigeria were incorporated in the new law, thereby making Nigeria’s maritime laws at par with what obtains internationally.
4. The role of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) as the administrator of all the ports in Nigeria is critical to the efficient operation of Nigeria’s maritime industry and the promotion of international trade.
5. Over the years, decay in port infrastructure lack of regular dredging of channels and berths, and poor cargo handling facilities have meant Nigerian ports have become uncompetitive internationally and hampers international trade.
6. The recent privatization and concessioning of some of our ports by the government have brought notable reforms such as economic growth, encouragement of foreign direct investment, bountiful financial returns to the Federal Government, better efficiency in Apapa Port cargo handling, etc,. However, several Nigerian ports are still underutilized such as Calabar, Warri and Port Harcourt, while the ports in Lagos are over utilized and frequently witness ports congestions.
7. The issue of safety and security of vessel on our territorial waters and ports deserves to be addressed. Nigeria has the second highest record of piracy and armed robbery incidents in the world coming only behind Somalia. This has resulted in increased freight and insurance charges. The problem of kidnapping in Nigeria also negatively affects foreign investment in the country.
8. The proper functioning of the Inland Container Depots (ICDs) depends crucially on a well developed multimodal transport system combining the various modes of transportation of sea, land and rail. The overdependence on road haulage of containers as a result of the collapse of our rail system and the impenetrable inland waterways are undesirable.
9. There are too many bottlenecks characterizing the clearance of goods which can be discouraging to importers and foreign investors.
10. Part of the activities of the Navy is the enforcement of international instruments like the law of the sea, maintaining standards of shipping and navigation in the Nigerian waters, provision of hydrographic maps and constant patrol of the maritime environment. The Navy personnel provide security at the shipping environment, especially because of the problem of kidnapping in the Niger Delta, which has caused most of the industries in the area to relocate.
11.The ports are the gateway for inward and outward movement of goods. The Customs service has a lot to do regarding what happens in the maritime industry. Customs has a role as collector of revenue and also functions in terms of security. The Eastern and Western Marine Unit of the Navy, have the functions of preventing smuggling through the waterways and examining cargo brought in. They have also contributed in the economy by preventing dumping of goods.
12.Nigeria is no longer a ship owning Nation. The Nigerian National Shipping Line (NNSL) has gone into liquidation, and presently, all the vessels that ply our waters, are all foreign vessels. A ship owner or merchant in one country wants to be sure that the same set of laws, rules and regulations which regulate his operations in his country which he is familiar with will equally apply when he sails his ship to another port.
13.The acute dearth of vessels owned, built, and managed by Nigerians has made the implementation of some of the provisions of the Cabotage Act 2003, especially on waiver and license, impossible and also resulting in neglect in development of manpower capacity.
14. Maritime arbitration offers the option of privately resolving international maritime disputes outside the national court system. Its advantages include: attraction of foreign direct investment, sustenance of high level of local direct investment, cost effectiveness, timeliness, privacy, confidentiality, etc.
At the end of the Roundtable, the following recommendations were made:
1. The Federal Government through the appropriate agencies should look into the causes of bottlenecks that characterize clearance of goods inour ports which can be quite discouraging.
2. It is important that security in the maritime environment is given serious attention in order to bring to an end the bad image the country has acquired in the international forum. In addition an immediate solution should be found to abate the incessant kidnappings going on in the country.
3. The problem of incessant congestion of the Lagos Apapa Port, while other ports like Calabar, Warri and Port Harcourt remain underutilized requires urgent attention.
4. Conditions for grant of waiver and licence should be made more stringent to discourage the easy grant of same to, at least wholly owned and crewed foreign vessels. There is no need to require Nigerian owned vessels to pay any fees for waivers in respect of manner and place of building.
5. While controversy is raging on the Maritime Security Agency (MASECA) 2009 Bill, the National Assembly should take a quick decision on whether or not to pass the Bill bearing in mind that it is not the name or designation of the agency charged with the responsibility for improving the security of our territorial waters that matters. What matters is how well the body is equipped and empowered to carry out its functions effectively.
6. There is need for a review of the Cabotage Act, 2003 in order to make it practicable. In addition, all the laws affecting maritime in Nigeria should be interfaced and harmonized so as to appropriately complement each other.
7. The National Inland Waterways Authority should be more alive to its statutory duties, and dredge our waterways to allow for large ships to ply them.
8. Government should revamp the entire rail system in Nigeria, so that rail transportation will take its place as the preferred means of transporting bulk cargo to and from the Inland Container Depots (ICDs).
9. To improve on maritime arbitration, the following were recommended:
a. States should repeal the old arbitration laws and enact new laws as was done by Lagos State, which enacted the Lagos State Arbitration Law, 2007 to meet up with international standards.
b. Our courts need to apply the provisions of the New York Convention and also appreciate that time is of essence in arbitration matters.
c. There is need to improve on the perception of corruption in our system which undermines the appointment of Nigerian arbitrators in cases involving foreigners.
d. Our infrastructures like airport facilities, environment, roads, electricity, etc. need to be given appropriate face-lift.
National Inland Waterways Act 1997,
Nimasa Act 2007,
Coastal and Inland Shipping(cabotage) Act 2003,
Merchant Shipping Act 2007,
The Nigerian Tribune (Friday May 10, 2013 publication),
Daily Sun, Monday, July 31, 2000,
Communique on Roundtable on The Strengthening Nigeria’s Maritime Rights: Imperatives for Achieving Global Standards; By Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Lagos, Nigeria, 13th July, 2010,
Voyage: A Journal of National Maritime Authority, Vol. 3, No. 1 October- December, 2002,
Voyage: In-House Journal of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety (NIMASA), July- September, 2007.