Clearing Agents to call off strike today

There are strong indications that clearing agents under the umbrella of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) and the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) will end their 11-day strike today.

The clearing agents had commenced the strike action on Monday 3rd November 2014 to protest alleged high charges at the port.

However, the Seaport Terminal Operators Association of Nigeria (STOAN) accused the agents of embarking on the strike in sympathy with the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) over a court case instituted by association over a directive to reverse progressive storage charges at the port.

The agents crippled activities at the nation’s major seaport, the Lagos Port Complex (LPC) Apapa costing the economy as much as N55 billion over the strike period.

It is also feared that congestion may have built up at the nation’s major container terminal, APM Terminals Apapa which was largely affected by the strike action.

At a meeting held yesterday and moderated by the Commissioner of the Western Ports Police Command, Mrs. Hilda Ibifuro-Harrison, the terminal operator and the striking agents reached agreements on most of the contentious issues.

“The economy is suffering so we have all agreed to shift grounds to end the strike. Everyone is a loser as a result of this action,” a clearing agent who participated in the meeting told SHIPS & PORTS DAILY.

He said a memorandum of understanding will be signed by all the parties in the dispute this morning following which a formal end to the strike would be announced.

Founder of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), Dr. Boniface Aniebonam had on Wednesday asked the striking agents to end their action in the interest of the national economy.

He also said that it was wrong for the striking agents to single out APM Terminals Apapa as their target among all the terminal operators.

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