Wednesday, March 2, 2016 8:32 pm
The reason for the load shedding: the low transfer of cargoes from the port terminal operators to them.
Those affected told NAN that some bonded terminals had been without cargoes for two years.
They decried the inability of some port concessionaires to fulfil government’s policy on transfer of cargoes to bonded terminals in order to decongest the ports.
Those affected worked with Aulic, Sapid Agencies, Clarion and Advanced Motor Logistics (AML).
A former Transfer Officer at Sapid Agencies, Mr Simon Idoko, said that the inability of the management to get cargoes allotted to the bonded terminals led to the termination of appointment of 16 staff in December.
A crane driver with AML, Mr Akpan Okon, urged the Federal Government to give a directive that cargoes should be brought to bonded terminals to avoid continuous retrenchment of workers.
“It took me four years of apprenticeship to learn about crane driving and positioning of containers,’’ Okon told NAN.
A clearing agent, Mr Babatunde Abdulkareem, said he had not been receiving cargoes since 2014, adding that as a result, the management of Clarion had disengaged some of the officials.
A receptionist with Sapid, Miss Blessing Daudu, attributed the loss of her job to low inflow of cargoes.
From 2001 to 2005, private bonded terminals witnessed a boom. However, since the take-over of port concessionaires, patronage had dwindled for the bonded terminal operators. What it meant was that hundreds of millions of investments in bonded terminal facilities had gone down the drain.
The spill-over effect had rendered jobless some 10, 000 workers and other ancillary operators connected to the business.
NAN reports that at the height of port congestion in the 1990s, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) licensed the bonded terminals to serve as the palliative for port congestion.