Shippers’ council lacks power to regulate the port, says shippers association

Few months into the expiration of the one year interim port regulatory role given to the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), President of the Shippers Association of Lagos State (SALS), Rev. Jonathan Nicole has blamed the government for the inability of the council to perform well in its new roles.

Nicole said the lack of enabling law to support the new roles given to the council and some other government shortcomings made the council fail in performing its new duties.
Nicole disclosed that the NSC had a lot to put right in the maritime industry but that government must put the law in place for it to work.
He said, “The limitation of the Shippers’ Council is from the government. First of all, they appointed the Council as port regulator but they did not give the enabling power to regulate so how do we now expect them to perform wonders?
“We are asking government to give them enabling power to do their job, and when they have this power they can prosecute offenders.”
Nicole also stated that apart from the enabling law, the NSC was also being underfunded by the government.
He said that for the Council to perform its job diligently, they needed to be funded by the government adequately.
He added that the new roles that were given to the council were five times more than what they were doing before.
“I don’t know why government decided to underfund the Council. Maybe they have their reasons because we all know how government operates. Maybe it will take them time before they say okay we are releasing funds to you to work.
“If we want to build a vibrant atmosphere as far as we are concerned in Nigeria, the Council needs funds to work, call meetings, take care of those involved, because it’s present responsibilities are now five times what it used to do.
“But with this problem of lack of funding, it becomes a problem because they cannot function properly,” he said.

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