Port operators under the aegis of the Seaport Terminal Operators Association of Nigeria (STOAN) have said that the Quay Aprons in Apapa and Tin-Can ports are already giving way.
This is even as the operators said that the Perimeter Fencing at Tin-Can ports and the access road into Onne Port is also nearing collapse.
Speaking recently when the League of Maritime Editors held their 2022 Retreat in Lagos, STOAN Spokesman, MrBolajiAkinola lamented that the collection of all revenue generated by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) into the Federation coffers is majorly the reason why these port facilities have not been repaired.
According to MrBolajiAkinola, “Onne Port, which is a greenfield port is suffering. The major link road that feeds the port, the East-West Road is dilapidated. The Federal Government is supposed to have fixed that road for a very long time now, but that has not happened.
“You know that the Onne Port is in an industrial area which is also in a Free Trade Zone. The port needs a very good access road to aid seamless movement of cargoes out of the port, but that has not been the case. The port is suffering because the East-West road is becoming an eyesore.
“Here in Apapa and Tin-Can ports, the Quay Aprons are giving way. Tin-can ports is over 40 years old. How do you expect to keep putting heavy weight equipment on this Quay Aprons for over 40 years without putting anything back in them to re-enforce them?
“Another things need to be fixed is the perimeter fencing at Tin-Can port, which is also giving way. NPA would ordinarily have done these things but the fact that all revenue generated goes straight into the Federation account is an issue. The agency cannot repair these port amenities because every kobo, once generated, is paid into the federation coffers, leaving the agency with barely nothing.”
The STOAN Spokesman also commended the CG of Customs for deploying scanners at the ports.
“I will like to use this opportunity to commend the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) for putting scanners at the ports. For years, we have had cargoes examined via 100 percent physical examination, and I understand why this happens. We have an importing community that seems not to be compliant.
“With the scanners, this will really aid seamless examination of cargoes at the port. I will want to urge the Customs to complete full automation of their processes. The Customs Modernisation project, I understand is on the way. This should be completed in no time so that we ca have full automation of Customs processes at our ports,” the STOAN Spokesman added.