|Credit: Onepageafrica Archive|
of Nigeria (MWUN) has vowed to shut down the nation’s ports if the
International Oil Companies (IOCs) in Nigeria fail to pay the dockworkers wages
in the next 14 days.
dockworkers were employed by stevedoring companies working for the Nigerian
Ports Authority (NPA).
The Union’s President
General, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju and its Secretary General, Felix Akingboye,disclosed in a statement on Thursday in Lagos that the Union would embark on a
strike if the government fails to compel the IOCs to effect the payment within
the period of its notice.
“We are aware that on 1st June 2018, the NPA appointed
stevedoring contractors to provide stevedoring services at various offshore
jetties and onshore locations to the international oil services and other
“We commend the Managing Director of NPA for the effort NPA
management has made to compel the IOCs to engage the services of appointed
stevedores and registered dockworkers in their stevedoring operations. But,
unfortunately, the operators have refused to comply with the NPA directive
after one year that the stevedoring contractors were appointed.
“The position of the operators on the NPA directive is
worrisome and very surprising because the same operators had processed and paid
the former stevedoring contractors since 2010 through a foremost terminal
operator. So, why are they refusing to cooperate with the newly appointed
stevedoring contractors since the modus operandi remains the same?
“In fact, at a stakeholders meeting held on February 28th
2018 organised by NPA to sensitize the IOCs, jetty owners and terminal
owners, the NPA management made it clear that in line with section 27 of the
NIMASA Act 2007, only government appointed stevedores and registered
dockworkers are empowered by law to solely handle discharge and loading
operations at the port, jetties and oil platforms.
Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria has been monitoring the chain of events on
this matter since the last one year, and noted that the implication of the
operators defiant attitude amongst others is untimely death of some dock
workers while awaiting the payment of their wages, because they could not meet
their family obligations like payment of house rent, children school fees and
hospital bills, to mention but few.
“Consequently, we are constrained to give the Ministry of Transportation that
superintends the appointment of stevedores’ 14- day ultimatum to prevail on the
management of the International Oil Companies to pay all outstanding bills to
our members, failure of which we will be compelled to withdraw our services and
shut down operations in all the nations’ seaport.”