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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
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
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.

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