Chimezule, Obinuchi; Kinikanwo Handsome O.


A huge percentage of world trade are transported by sea. Thus, the shipping industry is undoubtedly one of the life wires of global economy. Without shipping, intercontinental trade, the bulk transport of raw materials, and the import/export of affordable food and manufactured goods will be almost impossible. The continuous expansion of Seaborne trade which is so beneficial to consumers all over the world through competitive freight costs is attributable to the ever growing efficiency of shipping as a medium of transportation and the attendant economic implications. Impressively, petroleum resources are equally transported by sea through the shipping industry. The global scrambling for oil raised expectations that petroleum resources would boost the economy of exporting developing countries. Worst still, the sea through which petroleum resources and other products are transported is constantly under criminal activities and attack by pirates. Crimes on the Nigeria water ways and the Gulf of Guinea is on the increase such that human right, livelihood, environment and the economy of the region are being threatened. There is need for an effective legal protection of both the environment, and the activities within the region. This article is aimed at examining the socio-legal implications of crimes and piracy on Nigeria water ways and the Gulf of Guinea. The objective is to examine the need to guard the area and fashion out ways of utilizing and improving on existing legal framework to combat maritime crimes. When domestic laws are strengthened to align with the treaty's provisions regarding activities in the area, it will enhance enforcement, curb criminal activities, boost the confidence of investors and improve the economy of the region for the benefit of the region and the global community.

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