Malami elected as UNIDROIT Chair, unveils Action Plan




Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami has been unanimously elected as the Chairman of the 78th
session of the General Assembly of the International Institute for the
Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT), an international organization
that seeks to harmonize international private laws across 63 member
countries.
The election which took place at the 78th General Assembly Meeting
held on Thursday December 12th, 2019 in Rome, Italy followed the
proposal by four counties; South Africa, Egypt, Australia and Spain
that the Nigerian AGF be elected to chair the Assembly of the state
parties.
The nomination was unanimously supported by the General Assembly of
member states including United State of America, United Kingdom,
Germany, France and Canada.
This is contained in a statement issued by Dr. Umar Jibrilu Gwandu,
the Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations, office of the
Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, and made
available to newsmen in Abuja on Friday 13th December, 2019.
In his address shortly before the election, the Chair of the General
Secretary (2018-2019), Paul Duhr, Ambassador of Luxembourg to Italy
noted that the post of Chair of the General Assembly has traditionally
rotated among the four geographical regions of UNIDROIT pursuant to
the Article 7(7) of the UNIDROIT regulations.
Addressing the Assembly as the newly elected Chair, the
Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice noted that
Nigeria has been an active participant member of UNIDROIT since 1964.
Malami who described Nigeria as a major global commercial player in
the African continent said the country is “Africa’s largest economy
and projected to be among the top 20 economies by 2050”.
He recalled that a former Attorney-General of the Federation and
Minister of Justice, Michael Aondoaka, SAN was elected for a five year
term (2008-2013) to the UNIDROIT Governing Council.
The Minister said with the Nigeria’s advancement in areas such as
telecommunication and e-commerce, the country has taken greater
interest in the emerging global legal architecture being developed by
UNIDROIT.
As the Chairman, Malami resolved commitment to boosting the activities
of UNIDROIT during his tenure as the Chairman and work assiduously
towards ensuring the “entry into force of the Protocol to the Cape
Town Convention on matters specific to Mining, Agriculture and
Construction of Equipment (MAC Protocol) the text of which was
recently adopted at the diplomatic conference held in Pretoria, South
Africa November, 2019”.
“Following extensive consultations with stakeholders on the future
Legal Guide on Agricultural Land Investment Contracts”, the Chair said
he hoped to see to the “finalization of the draft text for
presentation to and adoption by the Governing Council in May, 2020”.
While maintaining commitment to “entry into force the Luxembourg Rail
Protocol, which currently requires only one more Contracting State to
enter into force” he said with that Protocol’s entry into force, it
could “begin facilitating cross-border and domestic financing of
railway rolling stock, thereby generating economic growth, and provide
further momentum in attracting more Contracting States to that
Protocol.
For the Institutional development, the Chair said he will work
vigorously to ensure the adoption and implementation of UNIDROIT’s
Work Programme for the 2020-2022 triennium, which he said has great
importance in guiding the use of UNIDROIT’s limited resources and
determining its various projects and their respective priorities.
Malami expressed determinatipn to ensure full implementation of the
recently adopted compensation and social security reforms, together
with possible further improvements to UNIDROIT’s Regulations and its
overall administrational framework.
It is on this note that he called on all state parties to work hard in
achieving their objectives “The unification of private law is a great
task UNIDROIT is saddled with. It, therefore, behoves on this session
for all hands to be on deck to ensure issues on the agenda are tackled
expeditiously. I have no doubt in this endeavor, I can presume your
cooperation and assistance throughout this session,” he said.
It could be recalled that the Minister was at one time President of
International Anti-Corruption Academy and Member International Court
of Arbitration.