pix:PG MWUN, Comrd. Adewale Adeyanju at NEC with other stakeholders.
* Calls on NPA to employ more junior Staff
* We are already addressing that – NPA
* Says establishment of NTP will enhance national development
By Frank Odinukaeze
Despite huge expectations as a result of the concession of the ports,it has only achieved relative success as it has failed to address issues of ease of doing business in the ports, amongst others.
The president General of the Maririme Workers Union ( MWUN),Prince Adewale Adeyanju ,made this observation yesterday,at the National Executive Committee ( NEC) meeting , in Lagos
In his speech titled ,” Taking Stock,Charting the Future”,Adeyanju noted that although there has been some improvement in the port operation since the concessioning of the port,” But
there are still some issues affecting the performance of ports such as high port charges,delay in cargo clearance,multiple taxation,and development of intermodal transport and worse of all ,low job creation” he said
The MWUN president noted that as a result of concession,NPA work force was drastically reduced leading to near extinction of the junior cadre of the organisation.
His words,”Even now,the Nigerian ports Authority (NPA), can only account for about 4000 or more employees as against the 13,000 workers employed before concession,which is leading to a gradual extinction of junior workers of NPA.We are therefore calling on NPA to as a matter of national importance,employ more junior workers”.
He stressed that this issue is a ,” Major concern to us as a workers’ union especially noting that the employment of our government maritime sector parastatals have over the last decade assumed an inverted pyramid employment structure ,where we have more of senior officers than junior Staff,this affecting their capacity to effectively man port operations ,in jetties,terminals etc”
Prince Adeyanju harped on the need to quickly implement the Cabotage Act ( 2003),which according to him,would address some short comings currently being experienced in the port today as a fall out of port concession.
” There is indeed the need to implement the Cabotage Act( 2003), with regard to monitoring ,regulating and standardizing the operations of concessioned ports in view of what seems to be the declining operational influence of government” he stated.
In his response ,the Managing Director of the Nigerian ports Authority ( NPA), Mr.Mohammed Bello – Koko ,who was represented by Alhaji Ahmad Umar and Awonor Koko,AGM , Industrial Relations ,affirmed that the organisation is already addressing some of the issues raised by Comrade Adeyanju, particularly the issue of lack of junior Staff,adding that the management has obtained approval to deal with that situation.
He equally praised the Adeyanju led union for the peace the industry had enjoyed under his watch and wished the union more successes.
Consequently,Prince Adeyanju lamented the absence of National Transport policy that would give clear direction on the operations and activities relating to transportation in the country.
“As workers in the transport sector ,we yearn for seamless movement of goods and people from one point to another ,to boost our economy and stimulate social integration . Unfortunately,this desire is hampered clearly by our nation’s lack of a clear transport policy.It is obviously now necessary that Nigeria develops a sustainable national integrated transport policy to serve as a catalyst for the overall development of the country* he affirmed.
The MWUN boss showered praises on the Managing Director of the Nigerian ports Authority (NPA),Director General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency ( NIMASA), Dr Jamoh Bashir,(OFR), Executive Secretary / CEO,Nigerian Shippers’Council,(NSC), Jon.Emmanuel Jime,Managing Director ,National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), and other agencies and organisations for their support to the MWUN.
He noted that the National Executive Council (NEC), Meeting ,is an annual event which continues to ,” Bind us together in our determination and commitment for decent living for ourselves ,and members”
He saluted the courage , determination and .commitmentof members ,which has propelled the growth and development of the union .
His words,” Your passion has helped us to remain resolute and focused on our goal to encourage and maintain high level of productivity and efficiency in the maritime sector and most importantly ,to foster unity,friendship and cooperation among the members generally”