Home News NEC Communique: Maritime Workers Lament Deplorable Access Roads to Seaports

NEC Communique: Maritime Workers Lament Deplorable Access Roads to Seaports

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… chart way forward for the Industry

… harp on welfare of members

Pearl Ngwama

 

The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has once again drawn the attention of the federal government to the deplorable state of the access roads to the Lagos seaports, and the danger it poses to lives and properties.

 

The Union which made the call via a communique delivered after its recent National Executive (NEC) meeting held in Lagos noted that it was necessary in order to avoid unnecessary deaths and loss of man hour incurred in traversing the roads daily.

 

“Council in session hereby call on the federal government and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to urgently fix the access roads,” the Communique said.

 

In view of this, the Council unanimously directed the Central Working Committee of the Union to mobilise members for a three-day warning strike to bring to public space its disenchantment at the continued neglect of the access road to Lagos ports by successive governments and the urgent need for its repair.

 

MWUN NEC equally pointed out the awful state of infrastructure in all our ports, jetties and terminals and therefore called for the development and provision of facilities to enable all the ports perform optimally so as to relief pressure on the Lagos ports.

 

It also noted that the Calabar – Etu, Ikot – Ekpene – Aba and Calabar – Ikom/Ogoja roads in Cross River State which are major link roads to Calabar port (Nigerian Ports Authority) is virtually unmotorable and constitute death bed for most motorist.

 

“Flowing from this, NEC in session called on the federal government and its Ministry for Works and Housing, to immediately mobilise for the urgent renovation of the roads,” the Communique stated.

 

It also called on the Federal Ministry of Transport to as a matter of importance accede to the Union’s demand for payment of pension to its members; aged seafarers, whose employment were terminated by the defunct Nigeria National Shipping Line.

 

The Council in session noted the inconclusiveness of the National Joint Industrial Council (NJIC) meeting on dock workers minimum standard condition of service and hereby called on all concerned to expedite action to put closure to the negotiation.

 

The Communique called on the International Oil Companies (IOCs) to abide by the law which stipulates that registered workers be allowed access to work in their oil and gas platforms, jetties and terminals in accordance to federal government’s marine notice No. 106.

 

It condemned in its entirety the unnecessary looting and burning of the Headquarter building of the NPA, Marina, Lagos and called on government to put all machinery on ground to bring the culprits responsible for the burning of this national asset to book.

 

The NEC meeting noted that despite the award of contracts for the dredging of the Calabar Port many years ago, nothing has been done till date.

 

“This has put untold hardship on the maritime business in the Calabar corridor and created employment glut. Consequently, we call on the federal government to as a matter of urgency commence dredging of the Calabar sea port,” the Communique read.

 

The Council solidarised with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) on its call on government to revert the price of fuel and electric tariff to status quo.

 

Looking at the insecurity situation in the Country, the incessant robberies, kidnapping, killings, looting and others and called on the federal government to put every measure in place to secure the lives and properties of Nigeria citizens.

 

The Council in session called on the federal government to improve the capacity of Ibadan dry ports, Ogun, Kaduna and Kano dry Ports.

 

These dry ports should be linked with rail lines so that imported cargoes dropped at these dry ports can be examined and cleared so as to reduce pressure on Lagos port.

 

The MWUN NEC called on the federal government to as a matter of urgency facilitate the upgrading of the Maritime Academy, Oron, to a full fledge University to cater for the need for seafaring education.

 

Noting that piracy in the Littoral states have reached unprecedented proportion thus affecting businesses and the Nation’s economy, NEC called on the federal government to put every machinery in motion to secure life and properties on our water ways.

 

The Council in session appreciated Hajia Hadiza Bala Usman, the Managing Director, NPA, for her professionalism and general candour, as well as her efficiency and regard for standards and procedure.

 

It therefore, expressed its gratitude for her prominent role in ensuring finalisation of payment of severance package to Tally Clerks and on-board ship security gangway men in all ports and jetties as well as her continued support for workers projects and welfare.

 

The Council applauded the Managing Director of the National Inland Water Ways Authority (NIWA) for reactivating NIWA’s management, creating employment and business opportunities and generally putting in place a vibrant robust condition of service for its employees and our members in NIWA.

 

The MWUN NEC also appreciated the Director General, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Bashir Jamoh, and the Executive Secretary, Nigeria Shippers Council, Hassan Bello, for their intermediary roles, support and co-operation; conveying its willingness to continue to collaborate with their good offices.

 

The Council in session empathised with families and fellow Nigerians who lost loved ones in the recent ENDSARS protests which rocked the Nation recently.

 

It called on all Nigerians to strictly obey all the COVID-19 Protocols in order to checkmate the second wave of the dreaded virus.

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