Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar, has commended Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) for introducing electronic payment solution for all business transaction between it and its customers.
Umar gave the commendation at the NPA headquarters in Lagos on Friday shortly after a briefing by the Managing Director of NPA, Malam Habib Abdullahi.
“I will continue to encourage you to develop and synchronise this system so that all the other ports, the agencies and indeed the various management and staff will have access to information even within their hand sets. It is a great feat, a great achievement,” he said.
Umar also said that operation at Lekki Port is expected to kick-off in 2015, adding that other port projects like Ibaka and Badagry deep seaports are equally in place, assuring that they will bring massive development to the maritime industry.
Executive Director Finance and Administration of NPA, Mr. Olumide Oduntan, had earlier told the Minister that the organisation decided to introduce the e-payment solution because it believes in using technology to drive its system in order to enhance improved operations and efficiency.
He said that payment confirmation used to take between three to five days before, but with the new system in place, confirmation is made as soon as payment is made same day.
Oduntan said customers of NPA are very happy with the introduction of the new payment system because it has reduced transaction time. He said ninety percent of the customers have keyed into the system, pointing out that over four hundred transactions has been made since its commencement in March.
Oduntan said the system has reduced human contacts with customers, states payment details about the customer, bank and nature of transaction and receipts issued automatically and that this will impact on the NPA’s revenue as leakages are blocked, transparency enhanced and waiting time of vessels reduced.
He said the efficiency of the system was confirmed as payments by two customers were received through alert to the Managing Director and Executive Director’s mobile phones during the visit.
The Minister had also inspected the new Information Communication Technology (ICT) gallery which serves as a help desk where customers can call to make enquiries or register complaints about services.
Umar was accompanied on the visit by the Permanent Secretary, Engr. Nebolisa Emordi, and some directors of the ministry.