By DAPO OLAWUNI
Even as the “Operation Free the Port Corridor” initiative launched by the Federal Government recently has gained momentum, various Unions at the port has denounced allegations of extortion levelled against it by truckers.
This indication came to the fore on Wednesday when the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) and the Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) visited the Port Standing Tasks Team (PSTT) domiciled at the Nigerian Shippers Council headquarters in Apapa Lagos.
The Operation Free the Port Corridor is being coordinated by the PSTT.
The Coordinator General of the team, Mr. Moses Fadipe has disclosed that some persons pose as NARTO workers to extort money on the port corridors.
According to him, for the ports corridors to be freed, the PSTT needs to work with the NARTO and Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigerian (MWUN).
He said that the illegalities on the port corridors are being tackled as a lot of state and non-state actors are currently being profiled.
In his response, the Executive Secretary, NARTO, Mr. Ogbogo Aloga, said anyone collecting money on the port corridors is involved in an illegal act. He appealed to the PSTT to address illegalities along Mile 2, Tin Can and Liverpool.
NARTO President, Yusuf Lawal said there is need for collaboration amongst all agencies working in the ports.
He further stated that the transport sector of the maritime industry is currently going through a tough time.
Also, speaking at the meeting the President-General of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Comrade Adewale Adeyanju, expressed the readiness of the Union to support the team to ensure successful curbing of illegalities at the port.