Mon | Aug 21, 2017

MAJ hosts regional workshop for legislators

Published:Tuesday | November 17, 2015 | 11:00 AM
Participants and facilitators at the IMO-sponsored Legislative Drafting for Drafters workshop hosted by the MAJ in Kingston recently.

MAJ hosts regional

workshop for legislators

Under the general provisions of treaty law, and in accordance with International Maritime Organisation (IMO) instruments, states are responsible for promulgating martime legislation in the form of Acts of Parliament or regulations, to give full and proper effect to the conventions, protocols, codes and other instruments to which they are party so as to ensure they meet their international obligations, including the Safety of Life At Sea, Security and Protection of the Marine Environment Conventions.

This was the catalyst for a recent four-day regional workshop hosted in Kingston by the Maritime Authority of Jamaica (MAJ) entitled Legislative Drafting for Drafters. The workshop focused on the importance of having adequate and up-to-date legislation, as well as appropriate administrative procedures for their implementation and enforcement. It exposed the participants to the peculiar features of IMO instruments, highlighting areas such as liability and compensation in relation to national and foreign ships.

According to MAJ director general, Rear Admiral Peter Brady: "The ability to draft coherent and effective law is an essential skill for any lawyer involved in implementing the obligations created under international agreements into their domestic legal system. This workshop is, therefore, designed to provide lawyers serving as legislative drafters, and other officials involved in this work, with a practical 'hands-on' approach to understanding and developing the knowledge and skills necessary for sound legislative drafting practice."

Participants, who included attorneys from the Chambers of the Attorneys' General, parliamentary drafters, legal officers, and consultants, worked through a series of presentations, practical exercises and interactive group discussions developed to help them advance their skills in legislative drafting as they relate to the implementation of maritime conventions. They gained an important overview of the development of IMO instruments and the processes for their adoption, ratification, amendment, and implementation.

Dorota Lost-Sieminska, Eva Huehne and Aicha Cherif of the IMO conducted and facilitated the workshop, which was attended by 36 participants from 15 countries.