The Director-General of this Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Dr Bashir Jamoh, has stressed the need for the involvement of judges, attorneys, and other relevant prosecuting agencies in the accomplishment of marine safety.
According to a statement issued by the agency on Monday, Jamoh made this known at the maiden edition of this Nigerian Admiralty Colloquium themed ‘Achieving maritime safety, security, and shipping development’.
The NIMASA manager explained that the bureau had obtained judgment against 10 criminals, three of whom were foreign nationals and seven Nigerians.
He said they had been sentenced to seven years prison sentence each for marine offences on Nigerian waters, also noting that by May, the bureau was optimistic of a different judgment.
Jamoh was optimistic that with the newest alliance with the judiciary through legal tools set in place to prosecute criminals, more results could be gained.
He explained the theme of the colloquium was aggressive because using the Deep Blue project being introduced by the government, issues of maritime crimes on Nigerian territorial waters could be detained.
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Jamoh added that by next year, the reach of the colloquium would be expanded to add Justices of the Supreme Court.
He noted that the communiqué issued from the judges a year ago was introduced to the National Assembly for necessary amendment.
Jamoh said, “We are happy to announce the communiqué issued by the judges during the seminar held the preceding year on the SPOMO ACT has been introduced to the National Assembly for necessary amendment as suggested by the judges.
“This signifies that the first landmark and the progress of the particular judicial proceedings which connect with the maritime industry.”
According to Ladan, the 2019 first-quarter report by the International Maritime Bureau revealed that Nigeria, with a coastline of approximately 800 km, was labelled as a piracy hotspot as the nation’s waters alone accounted for 22 out of 66 piracy incidents reported worldwide.
To address this worrying situation, he called on all stakeholders such as law enforcement agencies, especially the navy as well as the judiciary to participate in their admiralty law series so as to seek long term solution to the challenge.
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