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1,500 trucks so far approved for port operations by Ports Authority

The Nigerian Port Authority (NPA) in its
determination to enforce implementation of minimum standard of trucks operating
at the ports, has reached out to the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs
Agents (ANLCA) and the National Association of Government Approved Freight
Forwarders (NAGAFF) to help sensitize their members and solicit their
cooperation in achieving desired outcome.

General Manager, Western Ports of NPA, High
Chief Michael Ajayi made the appeal when he visited the headquarters of both
associations in Lagos on Thursday.
Ajayi also disclosed that NPA had so far
registered and certified 1,500 trucks for operations at the ports in Lagos.
The truck certification exercise, which
commenced on February 1st will
end on February 29th.
“This exercise will afford NPA the
opportunity of data collation for traffic and infrastructure planning process
and to prevent sharp practices like theft and to serve as security measure to
prevent any threat to security in the ports in compliance with the International
Ships & Ports Facility Security Code (ISPS Code).
“We are here to ask for your cooperation and
to inform your members not to patronise any truck without NPA sticker as such
truck has not passed through our road worthiness certification exercise. 
“With effect from March 1st 2016, all trucks
without NPA sticker will not be allowed into the port,” he said.
He also informed the agents that plans were
ongoing to construct some parts of the road leading to the ports by Dangote
Group with the support of NPA.
In his response, the National President of
ANLCA, Prince Olayiwola Shittu lamented the proliferation of touts at the port
saying that the negative image often associated with clearing agents was as a
result of unwanted persons loitering around the port environment unchecked.
He blamed the situation on the Council for
the Regulation of Freight Forwarders (CRFFN) whom he said deceived NPA to issue
port pass to individuals registered by the council to have access to the port.
“Why should NPA be issuing us annual license
which we pay for if at the end of the day you don’t recognise the people you
have licensed. That is the reason why there are touts in the ports,” he said.
He charged NPA to take the bull by the horn
and do the needful if it is indeed desirous of controlling crowd at the port by
issuing new port passes to only corporate bodies.
Shittu also appealed to his guest to address
the problem of extortion by NPA security officials at the port.
The National President of NAGAFF, Chief
Eugene Nweke who received Ajayi and his team at the NAGAFF headquarters in
Apapa, appealed to NPA to prevail on truck operators to adopt uniform charges
in their operations.
While commending NPA for embarking on truck
certification to ensure that only roadworthy trucks are allowed into the ports,
he also called for action to curtail alleged extortion by security operatives.
He requested that further palliative
measures be put in place to fix other bad portions of the access roads.
Responding to some of the requests
made, Ajayi said NPA would introduce a new biometric identity card to
address the problem of different port passes control access into the ports.
He assured that NPA would investigate cases
of extortion by security agencies and bring to book any operative found

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