Lawyer urges stakeholders’ to keep heads of govt agencies on their toes

Barrister Osuala Nwagbara

A maritime lawyer, Osuala Nwagbara has called on industry stakeholders not to get tired of articulating their thoughts and ideas on ways to reposition the industry and communicating same to the government as it is in their own interest to do so.

Nwagbara who stated this in a chat with journalists in Lagos noted that although the stakeholders had done enough in terms of speaking on the ills of the industry and ways of addressing them, he however believed that with the crop of leaders at the helm of the various maritime agencies, it was not going to be rhetoric anymore.

According to him,” I am not sure it is going to be rhetoric as usual because we begin to see, for instance, NIMASA last year said that beginning from January, it is going to implement dock labour regulations to the letter. So, it is up to the stakeholders now to demand for implementation.

“NIMASA said in 2017, we are going to have a floating dock, it is up to the stakeholders, ship owners’ forum, ship owning interests to consistently demand for it, that they want to see a floating dock so that they can dry dock their ships, where they can do under water repairs, where they can do general repairs and maintenance of their ships. And when they do that, they will reduce capital flight, they will create employment, they save enough for the economy.

“Now, NPA is going to see that the access roads to the ports are repaired and maintained. It is up to stakeholders to start demanding in January that they want to see action. So, stakeholders are not expected to fold their hands and say we have talked last year, we won’t talk again this year, they have to talk.

“Stakeholders had suggested that the Nigeria Customs Service should reduce their import tariff; it is up to stakeholders to continue to demand that they do that for the benefit of the economy. So, when we consistently demand, it becomes clear that those who supposed to perform that are not performing will be spurred to action.”