The Managing Director of Nigerian Port Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, has called on the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to, as a matter of urgency, commence on-the-spot auction of all overtime cargoes at the ports.
Speaking in Lagos on Monday when she hosted executive members of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) at the NPA headquarters, Usman said the Ikorodu Lighter Terminal is already congested and can no longer accommodate overtime cargoes.
“What we seek to do is to have the Nigeria Customs auction the overtime cargo on the spot because already Ikorodu is full. So what we want is that cargo that have been identified as overtime in the port; they should auction it as it were and the ones at Ikorodu. The last time auction was done was in 2015 but what is more important now is that Ikorodu is full and so we need to auction on the spot.
“We have written to the Nigeria Customs on that and I believe this is something we are working to do because the port location is already congested because of the fact that overtime cargos have not been auctioned,” she said.
While noting that overtime cargo should not be abandoned at the Ikorodu Lighter Terminal, Usman explained that the facility is not totally designated for overtime cargo, but it is also being utilized for processing of agric produce as well as for cargo evacuation through the use of barges from the Apapa port.
“To the extent that Ikorodu is being utilized for other activities beyond overtime cargo, the space in that location is an area meant for overtime cargo and other activities. Other activities include agric processing. If you recall, part of the executive order require for Nigerian Port to so designate a terminal for agric processing and Ikorodu was so designated. In so doing, we are rehabilitating the quays, the contractor has reached about 70 to 80 percent of work which is been conclude and provide a strong quay in that area that will be used for agric processing
“In addition, we are using the Ikorodu terminal for evacuation using barges for inflow and outflow of cargo. So Ikorodu is not totally designated for overtime cargo, it is a portion of it and that portion where we have these cargoes, they should go and auction them and the other parts of it will be utilized accordingly,” she added.