Abbas, stakeholders make case for shipping regulatory agency’s establishment

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Tajudeen Abbas, the Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Mr. Gboyega Oyetola, and other stakeholders, have  pushed for the establishment of a shipping regulatory agency in Nigeria.

The speaker and the minister in their separate remarks during a public hearing on the Shipping Council’s Repeal and enactment of the Shippers’ Council and Economic Regulatory Bill in Abujan Monday said establishment of such regulator was long overdue.

Represented by Hon. Sada Soli at the public hearing organised by the House Committee on Shipping Services, Port Harbor, Maritime Safety, Education and Administration, Monday in Abuja, Abbas said the move to establish the regulatory agency was geared towards economic growth, development and diversification as well as strengthening the new ministry. 

“The amended bill encompasses critical provisions addressing several key areas essential for the effective functioning of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council. It details the structure and responsibilities of the management and staff, establishing a clear governance framework that defines roles and qualifications to ensure competent oversight. 

“The bill lays out financial provisions, specifying guidelines for the allocation, management, and auditing of funds, which is crucial for maintaining financial integrity and providing the council with the necessary resources to perform its duties. The bill also addresses offenses and penalties, outlining specific non-compliance issues and their corresponding penalties,” he said.

The Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Mr. Gboyega Oyetola, who was represented by Mr. Oloruntola Olufemi, permanent secretary of the ministry said it would be a welcome development if the bill became an act.

Chairman, Shipping Line Association of Nigeria, Barr Boma Alabi (SAN), said any act that will improve efficiency, lower cost, and reduce the bottleneck that people currently face will be most welcome. 

“We must be more efficient, and we welcome this regulatory agency that will be created to make things more efficient. We have expressed our concern internally and externally, and this committee, which has been involved in this process, must work on some areas of concern. 

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