By DAPO OLAWUNI
The access barrier created to check movement of trucks at the Abuja exit gate of Tincan Island port was destroyed on Tuesday by a Caterpillar driver believed to have been hired by hoodlums and touts hanging around the port premises.
DAILY TREND NEWS gathered that since the access barrier was mounted as part of ETO facilities, hoodlums and touts around the port have complained that their hitherto unfettered access to the port is being restricted.
In a video sent to our correspondent by a staff of Truck Transit Park Limited, technology company and owners of the ètò solution, the Caterpillar truck driver on Tuesday, 12th October, deliberately rammed into the access barrier at the Abuja exit gate of Tincan Island port.
According to eye witneses, the driver claimed his brakes had failed.
However, in the video after the accident, he is clearly seen driving the truck steadily and in control.
Our correspondent gathered from TTP staff on ground at the exit gates that several touts had been threatening to pull down the barrier just so they could carry out their illegal activities of entry and exit into the ports without ètò call-up.
The Caterpillar truck driver has been apprehended and handed over to the police.
Speaking on the development, a TTP Management Staff, Tony Uwaifo said “An interesting fact from the incident is that this Caterpillar truck driver approached the barrier from the side of the barrier, not in front or from behind, he drove from the side, a rather awkward angle”
“Interestingly, the Caterpillar truck does not proceed towards the concrete fence just beyond the barrier, a fact that would be evident if it was indeed a case of failed braking system”
“The open sabotage of the call-up system is a sad development and a stark reminder of how rife corruption is in our society”
Recall that the electronic truck call-up system, known as ètò was introduced by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) in February 2021, to manage the movement of trucks around the port corridors in Apapa.
Prior to the deployment of this system, the Nigerian Ports Authority and Trucks Transit Parks Limited, technology company and owners of the ètò solution had carried out sensitisation campaign since October 2020 on how the system works, how it will create more opportunities for truck transporters and ultimately improve Nigeria’s economy.
However, latest development of some malicious actors continously sabotaging the ètò system is a clear indication that NPA and TTP needs to continue to sensitise the public, especially as to why the electronic call-up system is a viable solution for tackling the Apapa gridlock.