NPA investigates allegation of extortion of truck drivers by security operatives

The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has set up a committee to investigation allegation of extortion of truck drivers by security operatives at the port entrances in Lagos.

The intervention Committee which is under the Chairmanship of the General Manager, Western Ports, NPA, Chief M.K. Ajayi is meant to address the fears of truckers Union on the alleged cases of extortion along Port access roads within the Lagos Ports Corridor.

In a statement signed by the General Manager, Public Affairs, Capt. Iheanacho Ebubeogu, the memberships of the Committee are drawn from the NPA truckers Unions, fleet operators, and security agencies.
Truckers union represented on the Committee include representatives of of Truck Owners Unions, Association of Maritime Transport Owners (AMARTO), Joint Council of Seaport Truck Operators (JACOST), National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO), Road Transport Employees association of Nigeria (RTEAN) and Truck Drivers Unit of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN).
Ajayi explained that the composition of the Committee became necessary
following repeated complaints by truck drivers on extortion by security operatives at the ports entrance.
Assuring that the Committee would verify all such allegations, Chief Ajayi warned that the Committee is determined to refer any erring Security Agency, found involved in such illegal act to the appropriate law enforcement agencies for necessary action.
It could be recalled that truck drivers operation at the Ports in Lagos have expressed concern over extortion by the security agencies at the Port.
The truckers who attributed the extortion for the unending vehicular traffic in the Apapa Port vicinity alleged that the frequent cases of the extortion has made loading in Lagos Ports a nightmare for both drivers and transport agents.
Meanwhile the management of NPA has reiterated its determination to always cater for the welfare of its workforce and to provide them with an enabling environment, which would ensure optimal productivity.
The General Manager, Western Ports, Chief M.K Ajayiwho gave the assurance, while enjoining all categories of workers in the organization to always strive to offer their best in the discharge of their duties.
Ajayi was speaking shortly before he commissioned the refurbished Break Lounge /Kitchenette for the security personnel of the Lagos Port Complex (LPC)Apapa.
The General Manager impressed on the workforce of the Authority to always realize that ‘’to whom much is given much is expected’’ and therefore urged the security personnel of the Ports who are the direct beneficiaries of the Lounge, to realize the sensitive position they occupy in the Management’s vision of providing an efficient Ports service in a safe, secured and Customer friendly environment.
Earlier in her welcome address, the Port Manager Lagos Port Complex Mrs Ezeoke Eunice Ngozi had said the lounge being launched was achieved as a result of long time planning and painstaking patience by relevant departments in the Port.
Aside this, the Port Manager recalled that the essence of the facility was to ensure that our Security personnel were comfortable whilst on duty as the Port is open to business for 24 hours, adding that in order to meet International best practices, security operatives should ensure good interpersonal practices with members of the Public in the Ports by being alert and well kitted at all times.
The General Manager Security, Colonel Tahir who was represented by the Assistant General Manager Security Western Ports Jamil Khali eulogized the initiative of the Port Manager LPC whilst promising that the Operatives would make good use of the facility in view of the resources put into its refurbishment.
In her remark, Hajia Halima Abdul of the Occupational & Health Department, LPC, said that the Lounge was a thing of joy to the Management of the Port and appealed to the Users to make good use of the place during break time to refresh themselves from the hazards of noise and human/vehicular pressure from Ports users.