Holding Bay Issue: NPA to sanction erring shipping coys, terminal operators

Shipping companies and terminal operators who fail to comply with an agreement on the usage of holding bays will henceforth be subjected to very still sanctions, the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, has said.



The agreement which was reached in November, 2017 between the Shipping Companies, Terminal Operators and the NPA, compelled the service providers to provide holding bays for their trucks and containers through the newly adopted call-up system.

In a statement in Lagos on Thursday, the Asst General Manager, Corporate Communications, Isah Suwaid, said these were part of the resolutions adopted at the end of two meetings between the NPA MD and the leadership of truck drivers and Maritime Workers Union in response to recent protests by trucks drivers at the Lagos Port Complex (LPC) and Tin Can Island Port (TCIP).

Usman informed the meeting on Wednesday (11th July, 2018) that the Authority has launched an investigation into the level of compliance or non-compliance to the agreements reached between the Authority, and the service providers, warning that “any company found to have contravened this agreement will be sanctioned.

On the newly adopted call-up system for trucks accessing the port, Hadiza Usman explained that the Authority had consulted widely with all stakeholders before the introduction of the system, adding that the system has proved to be the most effective way of managing traffic in the Apapa axis till date.

Commenting on complaints of the allegation of extortion by some security agencies, she assured that the Authority would investigate the allegation and culprits would be made to face the appropriate provision of the law.

Both the chairman of the Association of Maritime Truck Owners (AMATO) Chief Remi Ogungbemi and the President-General of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) Comrade Adeyanju Waheed while expressing their support for the call-up system now in place for the trucks, said that the system has sanitized traffic congestion on the Apapa axis.

The meeting between the NPA Management and the Union leadership was in furtherance to getting amicable solution to issues arising from the operation of the call-up system as part of the Authority’s Traffic Management Strategy, alleged extortion by security agencies and the utilisation of holding bays by shipping companies and terminal operators as defined by the November, 2017 agreement.

Meanwhile, the truck owners who had been on strike for about a week Thursday suspended their action.