Lagos – The Federal Ministry of Transportation is working toward domesticating international maritime convention to curb armed robbery and piracy along Nigeria’s maritime domain, a Director in the ministry, Mrs Ijeoma Chijioke.
Chijioke told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the nation lacked adequate sanctions against sea robbery and piracy.
She said the ministry was liaising with the National Assembly to domesticate the international legal instrument to curb the activities of sea robbers and pirates.
“It is disheartening that the menace of sea robbery is still with us; causing economic set back to our country in spite of efforts by government operatives to halt the trend.
“The instrument in our law books seem to have become outdated to cater for the current sea crimes.
“It is morally unacceptable for offenders to be let off the hook and asked to pay a paltry sum as penalty,’’ Chijioke told NAN.
She said that with the AU’s recent Extraordinary Summit on Maritime Security, hosted by Togo, countries would close ranks and fight a common enemy.
According to her, the nation’s blue economy, which can trigger development in other sectors, was under threat with pockets of sea robberies.
She said that potential investors could be scared away if sea robbery and piracy remained unchecked.