The Federal Government has embarked on measures to ensure smooth enforcement of the new anti-piracy law to stem criminality on the waters.
This was made known in Lagos at the Strategic Admiralty Law Seminar for Judges organised by the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (NIALS) and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA).
The theme of the conference was: “Suppression of Piracy and Other Maritime Offences (SPOMO) Act, 2019: Key to accelerating and achieving safe and secure shipping in Nigeria.” It was meant to sensitise judicial sector actors on the import of the anti-piracy law.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Directors-General of NIMASA and NIALS, Dr. Dakuku Peterside and Prof. Mohammed Tawfiq Ladan, emphasised the need for the implementation of the law. They called for cooperation among the enforcement agencies, stressing that stringent penalties await maritime criminals.
Peterside noted that there was a robust framework for the criminalisation and punishment of piracy and other maritime crimes in Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea.
He said the seminar afforded the Judiciary and the agency an opportunity to dialogue on issues of mutual importance, particularly, the sensitisation of judges on contemporary maritime law within and outside the Nigeria.
The seminar was previously meant for Judges of the Federal High Court, Court of Appeal, and High Courts of the littoral states. But this year, the scope of participation to include law enforcement agencies.
“With the world’s waters accounting for over 80 per cent of transportation requirements in the global trading supply chain network across established international routes and trade lanes, the threats of piracy, armed robbery at sea and other maritime crimes have been an issue of global concern.