Kunle Kalejaye 16 August 2015, Sweetcrude, Lagos – The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, has vowed to quickly resolve challenges stevedoring companies are facing in the nation’s ports.
The Acting Director General of NIMASA, Mr. Haruna Baba Jauro, gave the assurance when he played host to the Executive Committee members of the National Association of Stevedoring Companies led by its National President, Mr. Bolaji Sunmola, at the headquarters of the agency in Lagos.
Mr. Jauro, who observed that the Federal Government had gazetted a new set of guidelines for stevedoring operations in the country, noted that its enforcement would commence in earnest after due sensitisation of relevant stakeholders with the provisions.
“I can assure you that the guidelines we have put in place, which also have applicable sanctions will address all the issues you have raised and we are committed to enforcing all its provisions once we have sensitised all relevant stakeholders,” the DG said.
He also said that the agency will continue to engage its sister agencies with a view to resolving all outstanding issues for the benefit of the maritime sector and the country at large.
Earlier in his address, Mr. Sunmola noted that the association, in line with its 2014 regulation, is prepared to collaborate with NIMASA in the areas of human capacity development which is intended to help in job creation in the maritime sector.
He expressed the displeasure of the association on how its rights and privileges were being trampled upon by some government agencies and called on NIMASA to step into the situation to forestall a breakdown of law and order in the nation’s ports.
It will be recalled that a new set of ministerial guidelines for the appointment and operations of stevedoring services at the jetties and terminals was formally presented to stakeholders in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, during this year’s celebration of the Day of the Seafarer.
The guidelines, which were developed pursuant to relevant Sections of the NIMASA Act and the Nigerian Ports Authority Act, are aimed at addressing the appointment of stevedoring companies, inspection and enforcement, application fees, charges and dues as they apply to stevedoring operations.