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NPA moves to decongest Apapa, begins electronic truck call-up

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The Nigerian Ports Authority says it has commenced an electronic call-up system of trucks entering the Lagos ports to address the truck congestion in Apapa.

A statement signed by the Assistant General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications at the NPA, Ibrahim Nasiru, said henceforth, management of truck movement and access to and from the Apapa and Tin-Can ports would be guided by ETO.

The statement read in part, “As part of efforts aimed at finding a permanent solution to the problem of truck congestion around Apapa and its environs, the authority is pleased to announce the commencement of ETO, the Electronic Truck call-up system designed for the management of truck movement and access to and from the Lagos Ports Complex and the Tin Can Island Ports, Apapa, Lagos.

“All trucks doing business at the ports will be required to park at the approved truck parks until they are called up into the port through the ETO application.

“The ETO application will be responsible for the scheduling, entry and exit of all trucks into the ports with effect from 27th February 2021.

“Therefore, all transporters, trucks owners and truck drivers will be required to download the ETO App from Google play store or sign up at http://eto.ttp.com.ng before the commencement date to enable them register accordingly.”

It also stated that empty containers would only be returned to the ports through the approved holding bays of shipping companies using the ETO Platform, adding that it remained the responsibility of the shipping company to move empty containers from their holding bay to the Port.

It called for the cooperation of transporters, truck drivers, cargo owners, clearing agents shipping companies and all port users in implementing the project.

It warned that non-compliance with the ETO and its guidelines would lead to denial of access into the ports, impounding of trucks and withdrawal of registration/operating licence.

Maritime

18 terminal operators owe FG N490bn, says NPA

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Eighteen terminal operators at various ports in the country are indebted to the Federal Government to the tune of $753 million and N1.61 billion (N490 billion), the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has said.

This was down from the $852.094 million and N1.878 billion presented in an audit query presented to the National House of Representatives by the Office of the Auditor General for the Federation.

The query showed the debts by the terminal operators were as of December 31, 2019.

The report of the Office of the Auditor General for the Federation was based on alleged non-compliance, internal control weaknesses issues in Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the federal government of Nigeria for the year ended 31st December, 2019.

The 18 terminal operators are operating at the Lagos port complex, Tin Can Island port, Delta port, Rivers port Complex, Onne Port Complex and Calabar Port Complex.

The query identified the Terminal Operators owing the said funds as APM Terminal, Apapa owing $562 million, Apapa Bulk Terminal $4,621.20, ENL Consortium $957,020.77, Greenview Development, $20.8m  and Standard Flour Mills $893.77.

Others are Intels Nigeria Limited, operators of Terminal A at the Delta Ports Complex owing $2,429,382.80, Intels Nigeria Limited, operators of Terminal B of the Delta Ports Complex $4,589,576.75, and Associated Maritime Services $328,027.64, and Greenleigh Ports Nigeria Limited which is owing $1.7m

The rest are BUA Ports and Terminal Limited owing $12,254,424.55, Port and Terminal Operators Nigeria Limited, $107m, Brawal Shipping Nigeria Limited, $226,541.72, Intels Nigeria Limited operating at Onne Port Complex owes $430,404.81, Intels Nigeria Limited also at Onne Port is owing another $670,954.72, the same Intels Nigeria Limited owes another $1.9m also at Onne Port while Shoreline Logistics owed $1.2m.

In the documents submitted to the House Public Accounts Committee as part of its response to the investigation, the NPA management confirmed that the original debt owed the FG by the port operators stood at $852,093,730.77 and N1.9m.

It however disclosed that out of the initial amount owed by the operators, $753 million and N1.6 billion had not been paid.

The Managing Director of the Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) Mohammed Bello-Koko, had during his appearance before the Committee lamented the billions being owed to the FG by the operators and other industry players in the maritime sector.

He said despite its efforts, the NPA was unable to recover the debts and therefore sought the assistance of the Federal Ministry of Finance.

Chairman of the Committee, Wole Oke (PDP Osun), promised that the National Assembly would ensure the recovery of the funds.

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Maritime

Minister inaugurates Nigerian Shippers’ Council governing board

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The Minister of Transportation, Mu’azu Sambo, has inaugurated Nigerian Shippers’ Council Governing Board, urging members to shun corruption and work towards result-driven economy.

Sambo while inaugurating the board in Abuja on Thursday charged the team to maintain harmonious working relationship with the  management of the council.

HE expressed confidence in the ability of the board members to deploy their expertise to promote prudence, transparency, accountability, equity and fairness in the discharge of their responsibilities.

Sambo reminded members not to forget that the council had been vested with “the responsibility of providing a forum for the protection of the interest of shippers on matters affecting the shipment of imports and exports to and from Nigeria.

On her part, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr Magdalene Ajani, said, “You have your roles to support the Nigerian Shippers’ Council, but you are not part of the day to day running of the council.

“At a later date, we will have a retreat where your roles will be clearly spelt out.  We are planning to do it with all our boards so that we avoid conflicts. It has become important for me to stress this at every board inauguration for agencies of the Ministry of Transportation to avoid stress.”

Chairman of the newly constituted board, Lawal Sama’aila Abdullahi, promised that the board would deliver on its mandate.

Other members of the board are Rufai Akambi, Usen Udoh, Oluseyin Oduntan, Violet Williams, Mohammed Kam-Salem and Emmanuel Jime who doubles as the Executive Secretary of the NSC.

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First ship at Lekki deep sea port excites Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed excitement over the successful berthing of the first ship at Lekki deep sea port.

The vessel, ZHEN HUA 28, delivered three ships to shores and 10 rubber tyre gantries cranes that will help in the evacuation of cargoes from vessels to the shore.
The President stated this in a statement issued by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, on Saturday in Abuja.
He also congratulated the Federal Ministry of Transportation and the Nigerian Ports Authority on the achievement.
He also commended all stakeholders in the maritime sector for the feat.
Buhari recalled that his approval of four new seaports in the country, including the Lekki Deep Sea port, was hinged on growing the economy.
According to him, the decision was also aimed at creating massive job opportunities, foreign investment inflows and trade facilitation.
He commended the staff and management in the nation’s maritime sector who were working round the clock to make the operationalisation of Lekki Deep Sea port before the end of the year a reality.
The President reassured them of his commitment to sustain investments in these new assets.
According to Buhari, the nation’s maritime and aquatic resources are critical to the livelihoods of Nigerians and Government will spare no effort in successfully harnessing the potential of the sector.

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