The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has issued mandate letters to terminal operators for waiver of rent charges for initial period of 21 days, effective 23rd March, 2020.
The National President of the Association Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), Chief Iju Tony Nwabunike who disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday in Lagos revealed that the letter was dated 2nd April, 2020 and titled Relief Measures to Port Users Due to Outbreak of Covid19.
Nwabunike quoted the letter as reading partly, “Following the scourge of Covid19 pandemic and in line with the global trend of providing reliefs to businesses for the benefits of the general populace, you are hereby directed to suspend rent charges on consignments with effect from Monday, 23rd March, 2020 for an initial period of 21 days.”
He further disclosed that the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) in collaboration with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) had asked all customs brokers and freight forwarders who had finalised all payments of duties and ready to load their cargoes to do so as the customs would allow exit of such cargoes from the ports during the public holidays from Friday 10th to Monday 13th of April, 2020.
“Dear colleagues, with these two critical trade windows given us by the government agencies involved, I want to implore all of you to effectively grab this opportunity and move your consignments from the ports of Lagos as fast as you can, while the window last.
“I want to assure you all that the leadership of ANLCA will, especially at this period liaise with all relevant government agencies and other port stakeholders to make sure our members do not suffer undue losses in this trying time.
“I want to also appeal to all my colleagues to always follow the right channels of information so that they are not deprived or short changed by any agency during this period”, he said.
While appreciating the efforts of the federal government and its agencies operating in the ports for their efforts in making sure businesses move smoothly at the ports during this period of lockdown, the ANLCA helmsman equally appreciated the maritime media for their efforts in keeping all stakeholders informed of what was happening at the ports, despite the lockdown challenges.
“No doubt the media has been a dependable partner and I urge government agencies to also extend their hands of fellowship at this period to the media to aid them perform more creditably. The maritime media in Nigeria is very vibrant I must say. And to my colleagues in the profession, I promised you we will do everything humanly possible to alleviate your sufferings during this period through constructive stakeholders engagement with all parties concern”, he added.
Photo: ANLCA National President, Chief Iju Tony Nwabunike.
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