BREAKING: Court Bars State Govt From Inland Waterways Control

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A Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has ordered that no state government has the authority or powers to legislate on inland waterways in the country.

The court also declared that the management and control of Inland waterways in the country are exclusively within the control of the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) by the Constitution and the Act establishing NIWA by the National Assembly.

This has further strengthened the position of NIWA, which has been in a legal battle over the years with the Lagos State government, through the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), as well as other states that create their independent waterways apparatus.

According to a statement issued in Lokoja, Kogi State by the General Manager, Corporate Affairs of NIWA, Mr. Jibril Darda’u, the Judge, I.S Mark, gave the order in the suit No: FHC/PH/CS/142/2022 between Bright Waters Energy Limited (plaintiff) and the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, River State; Commissioner of Environment, Rivers State and Petroleum Financial Corporate (PFC) as (defendants).

The statement reads: “A state government has no authority/power to legislate on (and enforce compliance of its legislation that affect) the use, management and control of Inland waterways in Nigeria as it is exclusively within the control of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) by the constitution and the Act establishing NIWA by the National Assembly.

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