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WHAT THE MARITIME LAWYERS SAY ABOUT THE JUDGMENT

WHAT THE MARITIME LAWYERS SAY ABOUT THE JUDGMENT

Lawyers

 Barr. Emmanuel Nwagbara is a maritime lawyer

The court held that NSC didn’t have the right in law to issue the notice which it did. The notice was published in 2014. The court did not pronounce on the NSC gazette which was issued later in 2015. In my opinion, NSC would continue to act as economic regulator under the 2015 order that the president signed. The one which the court nullified was the earlier one which was by delegated power which the President carried out by delegating power to the Minister to issue a letter upon which Shippers’ Council acted. What NSC has now is a port regulatory order signed by the President.

Can the presidential order which gave birth to the port concession also be questioned since it was an executive order?

Well, we can’t deliberate on that at the moment because the court has not ruled on that. However, I think the Nigerian Shippers’ Council should appeal against that judgment.

OAL Maritime Lawyer, Dr. Oluwole Akinyeye

What the court said was that the government cannot give the powers of port economic regulator to the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) via an executive order because those functions were contained in the establishing Act of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).

Can the presidential order which gave birth to the port concession also be questioned since it was an executive order?

I don’t know of any court action that has challenged the port concession to terminal operators.

Funke Agbor, SAN

The court was right in the judgment that NSC didn’t have the right to function as at the port economic regulator especially as the case was instituted against the Council in 2014. At the time Shippers’ Council had not received the gazette directing it to function as the port economic regulator. The gazette which empowered the Council to function as port economic regulator came in 2015. I don’t know if the judge factored that in the judgment.

Can the presidential order which gave birth to the port concession also be questioned since it was an executive order?

That is a different matter. NPA can lease some of its functions. The port concession is leasing which is contained in the NPA Act. However, all presidential orders need legal backing to be enduring.

 

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