Urgent need to enact the National Transport Commission Act – PCC Chairman
...Calls for building of ring road from Tincan Island to Apapa Port
Chairman of the Nigerian Port Consultative Council, Otunba Kunle Folarin, has called for immediate consideration by the National Assembly to enact the National Transport Commission Act , in order to give proper structure to series of activities within the maritime sector that are shaping trade.
In a interview, Folarin told our correspondent that it was also important that the government resolved the issue of which agency should be the permanent economic regulator in the port, to help all stakeholders in the sector know who takes on what responsibility.
On his position about the trucks that have persistently been parked on the bridges and around street corners within Apapa, Folarin said that existing laws specifying what is acceptable should be enforced, just as a multimodal transportation approach be adopted.
“Now, all the trucks parked on the bridges would be there without enforcement, leaving the trucks on the laybys.
“Until we install the proper multimodal transport system, the road system would continue to face pressure and causing pressure and huge traffic,” Folarin said.
According to him, government should consider the advice to create a ring road from Tincan to Apapa Port, as he explained that “At the back of Creek road, there should be a ring road so that the traffic jam would not connect with the one that is exiting Apapa port main gate.
“The long creek road would service those cargo that are meant to go to Apapa-Oshodi Expressway after Tincan Port. The ring road would service those coming from the Tincan environment to the Apapa environment to join the traffic. The ring road is key solution to service the road mode.”
He explained that cargoes meant for Nigeria ports are subject to congestion surcharge to between 25 and 50 per cent as a result of congestion, which he said may happen from the anchorage when ships cannot berth on arrival due to congestion in the terminal.
That situation, according to Folarin, leaves ships waiting at anchorage open to piracy attacks and armed robbery at sea.
He called for improved efficiency in services at the terminals because, increased cargo dwell time would make the consignee suffer as according to him, “There would be demurrage collected by the shipping companies, while the terminal operator could collect more ground rent, and the charges would go to the consumer.
“If the road remains the way it is with single solution, the truckers would hike their tariff up to 300 to 500 per cent. The consequences would be hyperinflation and the end-users would suffer for it.”