The Nigerian Shippers’ Council, NSC has declared as unconstitutional the denomination of landside charges as well as other charges payable by barge operators who operates within the shores of Nigeria in Dollars.
The Executive Secretary of the NSC, Hon. Emmanuel Jime who made this declaration at a Breakfast Meeting organized by the Maritime Reporters’ Association of Nigeria, MARAN recently in Lagos stated that the action was inconsistent with the laws of the country.
His words, “Nigerian law as I understand it and as the Nigerian Shippers’ Council has been mandated to implement, does not recognize the denomination of landside charges in dollars. Wherever this is happening, that is completely inconsistent with the laws of this country and I can say that authoritatively.”
While urging the Barge Operators Association of Nigeria, BOAN to bring this complain up formally to the Nigerian Shippers’ Council as according to him, the information was not available to them, he however, said, “Now that I have, of course, been given a first hand information today, as soon as I go back, we will also activate our internal process to examine this situation with a view to addressing it frontally.
“So, I won’t wait for you anymore to give me a formal report because I will take this to mean that a formal report has been made to us. But I want to assure you that as far as landside charges are concerned, they cannot and should not be denominated in dollars.”
Earlier on, the Director of Operations, BOAN, Alhaji Nura Wagani had alleged that the Nigerian Ports Authority,NPA was charging the operators in dollars even when they ply their trade locally wondering how Nigerians operating in Nigeria with Naira could be charged in dollars by the regulators.
He said, “We are dying gradually. To barge one empty container, it is costing us N265,000, what about the laden ones? The tariff regime of NPA is not doable, we need to put an end to this tariff regime because it is not sustainable. Before you operate as a barge operator, you must obtain a bond of N50 million, if you don’t have patronage you cannot survive
“How can we as Nigerians be operating in Nigeria with Naira and our regulators are charging us in dollars?”
Photo: Mr. Temisan Omatseye, former Director General, NIMASA; Mr. Godfrey Bivbere, MARAN President; Hon. Emmanuel Jime, Executive Secretary, Nigerian Shippers’ Council; Dr. Eugene Nweke, former National President, NAGAFF; Comrade Prince Adewale Adeyanju, President General, MWUN and Hon. Olubunmi Olumekun, President Boat Operators Association of Nigeria, BOAN during the Breakfast Meeting organized by MARAN in Lagos last week.
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