The Nigerian Shippers’
Council (NSC) has said it would comply with a Federal High Court order which restrained it from implementing a notice reversing storage charges at the seaports.
The Deputy Director, Public Affairs of the NSC, Mr Ignatius Nweke told our correspondent in Lagos that it would not do anything to undermine the judiciary.
“Yes, as a law-abiding government agency, we will abide with the court order,” he said.
It will be recalled that members of the Association of Shipping Line Agencies (ASLA) had on last Friday, secured a court injunction restraining the NSC from acting upon a notice it published.
The notice indicated a reduction in the shipping lines’ agency charges among others.
The members of the association include, Alraine Shipping Agencies, Cross Marine Services, CMA CGM Delmas, Comet Shipping Services, Grimaldi Agency and Gulf Agency.
The others are Hull Blyth Nigeria Ltd, Lagos and Niger Shipping Agencies, Maersk Nigeria Ltd, Mediterranean Shipping Company, Mitsui OSK Lines, PIL Nigeria Ltd and Sharaf Shipping Agency.
The suit number FHC/L/CS/1646/2014 was filed on behalf of ALSA and its members by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Chidi Ilogu.
Justice Ibrahim Buba, who granted the order, had earlier granted a similar order in favour of the Seaport Terminal Operators Association of Nigeria (STOAN).
The order was to restrain the Council from implementing a notice reversing storage charges at the nation’s seaports.
Buba gave his ruling on an ex-parte motion brought before him on behalf of the terminal operators by their counsel Mr Femi Atoyebi (SAN) and Mrs Funke Agbor.
He granted an injunction restraining the NSC and/or its agents from implementing the reversal order pending determination of the substantive suit.
He adjourned the matter to November 10 for further hearing.
It will also be recalled that the NSC had on Wednesday last week, published an advertisement announcing the reversal of storage charges at the ports.
NSC also ordered an increase in the free storage period at the port from three days to seven days.
The council equally directed shipping companies to reduce their shipping line agency charges from N26,500 to N23,850 per TEU and from N48,000 to N40,000 per FEU.
It also directed shipping agencies to refund container deposits to importers and agents within 10 working days after the return of the empty containers.
NSC Boss Warns Maritime Agencies Against Unhealthy Rivalries
The Executive Secretary/ Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Barrister Hassan Bello, has warned agencies in the maritime sector to avoid superiority rivalry, saying it has done the industry more harm than good.
He also advised heads of maritime agencies to avoid cosmetic cooperation and come together for the development of the industry.
Bello gave this warning at a sent-forth ceremony organised in his honour, last Friday.
Bello bowed out of service last Friday after eight years of service.
He was appointed by the Goodluck Jonathan administration in 2013. Before his appointment, he was the Director, Legal Services of the NSC.
Bello noted that some agencies spent so much in defending their territories while neglecting their statutory mandates.
According to him, “There is lack of synergy among the agencies and I don’t think it is succeeding because it has been the basis of equality. There is no agency that is better than the other.
“Agencies are not graded by their budgets but what they contribute, but it is very unfortunate some agencies think that maritime starts and stops with them. No, it cannot work.
“Some agencies are trying to defend territories and in doing so, they go to a large extent and that is not good. They spend a lot of money to defend these territories while they neglect what they are established to do and that’s why we are not developing and that’s what Nigerian Shippers’ Council will never take from anybody not now, tomorrow or forever. We are all equal, we all have contributions to make.
“We can’t be having cosmetic cooperation, we have to have real cooperation”.
Bello said that the Federal Ministry of Transportation had undergone a lot of transformations, saying the era of state capture was over.
He lauded the Minister, Permanent Secretary and Directors of the Ministry for giving the Council the opportunity to achieve a lot through their supports.
By: Nkpemenyie Mcdominic, Lagos
Okowa Seeks Permanent Site For Maritime Varsity
The Delta State governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has called on the Federal Government to develop the permanent site of the Nigeria Maritime University (NMU), Okerenkoko.
Okowa made the call while playing host to the Governing Council of the university during a courtesy visit at the Government House, Asaba.
He said the establishment of a permanent campus would go a long way in putting the university on a sound footing, and ultimately enable it to deliver on its core mandate of imparting sound maritime-related education on students.
The governor said he was happy that the institution took off academic activities at the temporary site but urged the Federal Government to make resources available for the construction of buildings and provision of amenities that would enhance academic activities.
He noted that the birth of the special educational institution for the training of manpower in the maritime sector had strengthened peace and the economy of riverine communities.
Okowa advocated the need for more projects to be sited in riverine areas because of the inputs of riverine areas to the economy of the nation.
“We thank God that the Maritime University has started even when we have challenges because we do know that the take-off of the university brought good news to our people and helped us to build peace, particularly in our riverine areas”, he said.
Earlier, Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Governing Council of the university, Dr Elias Courson, commended Governor Okowa for his inspiring and magnanimous support towards the take-off and continued development of the university.
He also thanked the governor for establishing three additional universities in the state, which would provide additional access to quality education not only to Deltans but to Nigerians.
Dr Courson, however, appealed to Okowa to assist the university in completing the renovation/ remodelling of the classroom blocks, construction of additional staff quarters and provision of a potable water scheme in the campus.
By: Chinedu Wosu
2022 Nations Cup: S’Eagles To Travel To Cameroon By Boat
The Lagos State Ferry Services (LAGFERRY) says it will convey the Super Eagles of Nigeria by boat to Cameroon for next year’s Nations Cup.
Managing Director, LAGFERRY, Abdullah Balogun, stated this in a statement.
“We plan to take Nigeria’s Super Eagles to Cameroon for next year’s Nations Cup after achieving that of Benin Republic — this is a goal we have set for ourselves”, Balogun said.
LAGFERRY said they considered the boat trip following the success recorded in the Benin experience.
He said, “It was a major milestone for us to transport Nigeria’s national team to the Benin Republic through the waterways.
“Coming on board LAGFERRY through the international route to the Benin Republic is a mind-blowing experience. We were excited to be part of it”.
The LAGFERRY boss said the success recorded in the Benin game, where the Eagles won 1-0 away, was as a result of the trouble-free trip.
“It reflected on the field of play and it showed on their (players) performances because they came out victorious in the game,” he said.
Balogun said the players, during next year’s boat trip, would enjoy free Wi-Fi, USB pots and a lot of entertainment and side attractions enabled by technology.
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