MARITIME THIS WEEK: Recap of News, Events

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MARITIME THIS WEEK: Recap of News, Events


Abiodun OBA


Amaechi’s tango with the Senate over SAA

 Last week Monday, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, pointedly declared that the controversial Secure Anchorage Area (SAA) is illegal and whoever that patronizes the facility has broken the law of the land.

His position was in sharp contrast with that of the Senate which gave the facility a clean bill of health and declared its operator, Ocean Marine Solution Limited (OMSL) innocent of any alleged infraction.

The opposing views of both the Executive as represented by Ameachi and the Legislature as represented by the Senate over the important issue of security in the maritime industry is a sad commentary on the sorry level to which the matter has degenerated.

We are saddened by the wary thought that these critical arms of government could not agree on how best to tackle insecurity in the sector.

The issue of SAA has become an embarrassing spectacle that has exposed the underbelly of government in providing security in the maritime sector.


Cargo Dwell Time at Seaports Rises To 20 Days

The cargo dwell time at the Nigerian seaports has risen to 20 days due to congestion at the nation’s seaports.

Long cargo dwell times in ports are a critical issue in Sub-Saharan African countries since they result in slow import processes and are bound to dramatically reduce trade.

However, while Cotonou port had 14 days for cargo dwell time; Ghana’s Tema Port currently has 15 days dwell time, while Lome has the lowest port dwell time of nine days.

Speaking recently, the executive secretary, Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), Barr. Hassan Bello, however, said the council is working assiduously towards reducing the cargo dwell time which currently stands between 18-20 days.

“What Nigerian seaports is doing now is about 18-20days cargo dwell time, we want to reduce it. Also, ship turnaround time is also 4.2 days and we want to reduce it further. We want to attract more cargoes here not only for imports but also for exports and that is the whole issue.”



CRFFN begins collection of POF

The Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) on Monday, launched the collection of the Practitioners Operating Fee (POF) in Lagos.

The POF which amounts to N5billion will be collected from freight forwarders who operate at the seaports across the country.

The Registrar of the Council, Barr Samuel Nwakohu during the soft launch of the POF, explained the steps to take to make payments on the portal.

According to him, the soft launch means that there will be no full importation into the portal until two to three weeks.

A 20ft container will attract a fee of N1,000 while a 40ft container will attract N2,000 fee before it would be cleared from the port.


We are yet to conduct ANLCA western zone chairmanship elections— ASECO cries out.

The electoral body of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) has alerted the public that it has not conducted elections into the chairmanship positions of the Western zones of the association.

This was made known by the chairman of the Association’s Electoral Commission (ASECO), Barr. Raymond Onyimba, in a statement in Lagos, Monday.

ASECO said “This is to inform members of the public and particularly licensed members of our Association, that ASECO under my leadership has not conducted elections of Western zone.

“For further clarification, election in all chapters of Western Zone is still pending.


Shipping Coy bemoans congestion at Lagos Ports

German shipping company Hapag-Lloyd says current waiting times for a berth in APM terminal in Apapa, Nigeria, is more than 25 days, while for TICT terminal (Tincan Island) waiting time exceeds 10 days.

These operational delays are heavily affecting Hapag-Lloyd’s two services, MIAX and MWX, which have calls at both terminals in their long-term schedules.
Hapag-Lloyd, said that it is continuing to take measures for each vessel approaching the port of Lagos in order to minimise the impact on its customers.

If a decision to omit APMT terminal is taken, the cargo will be discharged at TICT terminal and further transferred to KCT terminal by dedicated barge service on Hapag-Lloyd account and arrangement, where customs clearance of Apapa cargo is possible.



ANLCA Counsels FG on Preventive Measures over Empty Containers

The Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) ,has counselled the Federal Government on preventive measures over empty containers being dumped in the country.

The association in Lagos on Tuesday, urged the Government to take urgent steps towards preventing the country from becoming a dumping site for empty containers.

The ANLCA President, Chief Iju Tony Nwabunike, during a media briefing, explained that the leadership of the country needs to be proactive in order to tackle the perennial gridlock in Apapa.


Customs Officers Risk CG’s Wrath Over Revenue Leakages

The Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Col. Hameed Ali (rtd), has warned officers whom he described as revenue risk to quit the service or await hard time.

This was even as he urged officers and men of the service to ensure that they adhere strictly to laid down rules guiding the NCS operations.

Ali, who spoke to officers and men of the NCS Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Command, Lagos, shortly after commissioning the Customs Processing Centre (CPC) at the airport, advised staff to step up the volume of seizures this year.



Clearing agents proffer solutions to tackle port congestion

The National Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents (NCMDLCA) has called the attention of the Federal Government on the urgent need to utilise the empty space at Kirikiri lighter port in order to reduce the present congestion in Lagos ports.

According to the President of NCMDLCA, Mr. Lucky Amiwero, most of the empty space that was converted to terminal in the Kirikiri lighter port area, were identified during the port congestion in 2001 by the Special Committee on Action Plan for Clearing Cargo BackLog, which eventually assisted in decongesting Lagos port in 2001.

ln a letter to President Muhammadu Buhari and a copy made available to newsmen, Amiwero said Kirikiri Lighter Port has four empty terminals that can accommodate 15,000 loaded containers, which will ease the congestion in Lagos and shift some of the pressure from Apapa Tincan to Kirikiri port area.

I remain Apapa chapter chairman, Onyeka boasts 

Apapa chapter chairman of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Chief Dom Onyeka has dismissed claims that no election was conducted into the chairmanship position of the Western zone of the association.

Onyeka told journalists in his office on Tuesday that December 2019 elections that brought him to office followed due process.

Onyeka was reacting to the position of Barrister Raymond Onyimba who had in a statement on Tuesday, alerted members of the association that his Association’s Electoral Commission led by him was yet to conduct election into the Western zone of the association.

According to Onyimba, the elections were suspended due to security reasons even as he maintained that new date and venue would be communicated to the members of the association after consultation with stakeholders.



Shippers’ Council calls for more collaboration with NISER — Joins NISER Joint Action Committee

From Left to Right: Mr. Philip Eduwa, Director, Strategy Planning & Research, NSC, Dr. Gbadebo Smith, Director- General, NISER and Mr. Glory Onojedo, Director, South-West Zone NSC

The Executive Secretary and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Mr. Hassan Bello, has called for more collaboration between NSC and the Nigerian Institute of Social & Economic Research (NISER) in the areas of research and capacity building.

Bello, who was represented by the Director, Strategy Planning & Research, Mr. Philip Eduwa made this call during a courtesy call on the Director- General, NISER, Dr. Gbadebo Smith in Ibadan, recently.

Bello said collaborations with NISER was vital for NSC’s dry port projects.


Replace locomotive engines and coaches on narrow gauge, Lagos train commuters beg FG

The Federal Government has been called upon to replace the locomotive engines and coaches on the narrow gauge to enhance services.

The commuters on the Lagos-Ogun Mass Transit Train Services (MTTS), made the plea while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Correspondent onboard to monitor the MTTS operation on Wednesday evening, said that the train service needed an upgrade and improvement.

According to the commuters, they suffered a lot to move around between September 2019, when the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) shut down its operation and Jan. 23, 2020, when the operations were resumed.

Speaking at Ebute-Metta Junction Railway Station before boarding, Mr. Matthew Omoniyi, a Stockbroker, said that train services on a narrow-gauge line returned with some efficiency but with old engines and coaches.

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