To facilitate access to operational information, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has agreed to integrate the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) transaction Portal into the Authority’s Web Portal.
The Managing Director, Hadiza Bala Usman who disclosed this while receiving members of the CRFFN governing board who paid her a courtesy call explained that the move is to create a synergy between the activities of the Authority and the Council.
Hadiza Bala Usman assured the entire Port users and most especially the Governing Board of the Council that Management would always be willing to promote an enabling environment and support to the Council in its quest at having a smooth operation in the Ports.
Hadiza made these remarks when the Abubarkar Tsanni Amadi led Governing Board of the Council for the Regulation of Freight Forwarding in Nigeria (CRFFN) led other members on a courtesy visit to the Corporate Headquarters, Marina, Lagos.
She told the delegates that Management was presently carrying out a review of the concession agreement with the Terminal Operators which is being bank rolled by the World Bank for a more efficient Port operation as well as to put them in shape in line with International best practice. Sanctions she stated have been put in place for either party who might wish to default in this regard.
In his welcome address, the Chairman of the CRFFN, Alhaji Abubakar Tsanni Amadi informed the Management that the body was in the NPA to seek for a mutual relationship between both parties with a view to further having an efficient service delivery through a seamless Port operation across board.
He called for an improved collaboration with Management in addressing the issue of unauthorised access to the Ports especially as it concerns those with no legitimate business in the Port. According to him, Permit need to be issued to Registered Freight Forwarders as contained in the CRFFN Act, section 19  to urgently avert any security breach in view of the volatility of the Port axis and most especially unwarranted human traffic.
Amadi while enumerating the various challenges facing the Port Industry such as delays caused by the long Dwelling Time of Cargo, traffic gridlock, and non-provision of empty containers Holding Bay by Shipping Companies requested Management to take a holistic approach to the charges slammed on Nigerian importers arising from Shipping Companies not having Holding Bays. He stated that the body has set up Committees with relevant sections of the CRFFN Act which if harnessed with the Management’s Security Division would bring sanity to the Ports operation and most meaningfully enhance revenue generation to the nation at large.
He further stated that the present CRFFN Executive which came on board in 2018 met an environment not conducive for Port operations especially as it concerns the Port infrastructure leading to the Ports and its environs hence the need for courtesy visit to impress on the Management to redress the situation urgently.
In a related development, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), while hosting the visiting members of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) led by its Chairman, Chief Increase Uche who paid a courtesy visit to the Corporate Office assured all that Government was very mindful of the need to meeting with International best practices through the ongoing Lekki Deep Seaport project. The Port on completion would be able to accommodate bigger vessels, adding that it is at the break water point which is being handled by the China Harbour serving as partners to the project.
The NAGAFF Chairman had earlier solicited for the support of the Management in the area of Port infrastructure especially as it concerns roads leading to the Ports and its environs which has drastically reduced the transfer of cargo out of the Ports to the hinterland. This according to him has had negative influence on the activities of its members doing business in the Ports across the country.
Chief Uche stated that it was readily available to participate in national development through meaningfully contributing its quota in the area of policy formulation with Management to the Maritime sector for the growth and development of the sector to achieve Operational efficiency and improved service delivery in line with International best practices.