Land and maritime boundaries are consequential to matters of national security, conflict resolution, transportation, telecommunication, physical infrastructure, socioeconomic planning and development in any countries of the world. The relevance of the functions of the Office of the Surveyor General of the Federation (OSGoF) and the roles of the surveyors in addressing challenges arising from land and boundary issues in Nigeria are therefore fundamental.
This thus informed the decision of the incumbent leadership of OSGoF to organize a 2-day training on Nigeria’s land and maritime boundary demarcation and management to build the capacities of the surveyors for better performance in their duties that could informed good decisions on land and maritime matters by the Nigerian Government. The training which was facilitated by the Training Coordinator of AFR Boundary Experts Nig. Ltd, Surv. Bashir Shettima and his partner, Surv. Arowolo M. Oladipopo took place in the conference hall of the Surveyors Council of Nigeria (SURCON), Garki in Abuja.
The Surveyor General of the Federation (SGoF), Surv. Samuel Adeniran Taiwo who declared the training open said boundary of land and maritime remained important for effective administration and socioeconomic development.
Surv. Taiwo maintained that there were political and technical aspects of boundary which required deeper knowledge and in view of the dynamic nature of the surveying and mapping profession pointing out that the value of the human person and performance has much to do with the knowledge a person acquired.
He therefore urged the participants of the training from OSGoF, SURCON and the National Boundary Commission to avail themselves the opportunities provided to upgrade their knowledge for effective discharge of their respective duties.
Earlier in his remarks, the Training Coordinator, Surv. Shettima says, “The surveyors as technical experts are expected to exhibit clear understanding of boundary marking, definition and management as the public always expect the surveyor to play magic role and provide solutions to boundary issues”.
According to Surv. Shettima, boundary management was only one aspect of the mandate of OSGoF, its importance to our national life and roles as factors of cooperation or irritants of conflict makes boundary matter serious issue of security and national interest.
He said the training was designed at exposing the participants to practical aspects of boundary management as required for the day-to-day operations of the technical officers on boundaries. Participants according to him would also be exposed to the principles of boundary making, archival search, initial charting/analysis, boundary treaties, role of surveyors in boundary works, boundary disputes and resolution, final demarcation, maritime boundary limits as provided under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 11 and other legal instruments.
In his vote of thanks, the Head of Department of International Boundary, Surv. Maliam Shuaibu described the training as a big time opportunity for the surveyors and some of the support staffers in OSGoF listed for the training. He thanked the SGoF providing the necessary support to hold the training. He also thanked the experts who facilitated the training programme and the participants for their interest.
Various papers were presented on Boundary Treaties; General Introduction on Boundary Marking; Archival Search; Boundary Conflict Resolution; Boundary Statement: Role of OSGoF; Maritime Boundary Negotiation and Delimitation: Nigeria’s Experience.
Abu, I. Michael
Head of Press and Public Relations