The Nigerian Institute of Chartered Arbitrators (NICArb) has urged the Federal Government to leverage its membership of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and the African Monetary Union to develop Nigeria as an arbitration hub.
Its Registrar, Mrs Shola Oshodi-John, spoke to reporters in Lagos, at a meeting to herald NICArb’s 40th anniversary conference.
Its theme is: Building a Culture of Arbitration and Sustainable Institutions in West Africa.
Oshodi-John advised the government to ensure that AfCFTA’s arbitration arrangements favour the country and to domesticate the Agreement.
The conference, which will address issues affecting Arbitration in West Africa, will hold on November 24 and 25, at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
She pledged NICArb members’ readiness to offer professional support to the government’s quest for corrective negotiations of various regional economic deals and foreign investors’ agreements.
NICArb also advised the Federal Government to reconsider Arbitration awards against it in the case of the Federal Government of Nigeria vs Process and Industrial Development Limited (P &ID).
“The Institute is ready to provide technical assistance through our experienced membership base in pioneering initiatives for corrective negotiations,” Oshodi-John said.
Oshodi-John also urged the National Assembly to review the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, for it to be suitable for present day practice, adding that the existing law was passed during pre-independence.
The Institute congratulated NICArb Vice President, Prof Fabian Ajogwu (SAN), for leading the team that secured a $1.69 billion arbitral award in Nigeria’s favour.
Source: Chinyere Okoroafor, THE NATION