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Opinion: Now that the Anti-Piracy Law has been enacted—Olu Akinsoji

Engr. Olu Akinsoji

Mike Igbokwe’s observations here and
comments here on the newly promulgated law against unlawful acts against the safety
of maritime navigation in our jurisdiction is inspiring.

The law as well as the
contribution of Mike are inspiring because it has taken fifteen years for us
(Nigeria) to consider the primary step of domestication of the international
convention (SUA) that came into force for Nigeria 14/5/2004 despite the unholy
state of our coast.
Fair enough, tremendous efforts
are made particularly in terms of funding various ideas to tackle the problems.
Now that the instrument of the foundation for sustainable solution has been
made, we should take appropriate step to give the provisions complete
interpretations, identify obligatory entities and put in place implementation
Mike has brilliantly
highlighted some of the provisions from legal perspectives and should be noted.
However, all areas of discretion or ambiguity should be determined in the
process of developing the implementation plan.
The implantation plan should be
comprehensive as much as possible, including the roles to be played by
obligatory entities, volunteers and interest groups. It should have performance
indicators and recognise the international, regional and NGOs interest in the
whole affairs.
Furthermore, it should be specific on
qualification, training and orientation needs of all the key positions in the
implementation process. The implementing agency should not see itself as an
authority but as the lead agency within the provisions of the law. 

May I also
suggest that the full text of the law is uploaded to the website of the
implementing agency (NIMASA). 

Finally, considering the international interest
and the importance of this law to the foundation of sustainable serene coast,
the difficulties (time and resources) in developing a comprehensive
implementation plan should be overlooked.

Engr. Olu Akinsoji is  a former Sole Administrator of the Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Oron, Akwa Ibom. 

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