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FG Has No Plan To Dredge Ports Outside Lagos – MAN

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The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has faulted the 2019 federal budget, saying no mention of any plan to dredge the various ports located outside Lagos to decongest the Tin Can and Wharf ports.
The association made this observation in its analysis of 2019 budget.
Citing President Muhammadu Buhari’s budget speech, MAN noted that the N194.24bn capital allocation to the development of transportation infrastructure was 26.2 per cent lower than the N263.10bn allocation in 2018.
MAN also observed that the N80.22bn allocation for counterpart funding of railway projects, and the N27.12bn allocation for rehabilitation of rail tracks and general maintenance/running of the rail system, were critical.
The statement further maintained that no country in the world had ever become fully industrialised without a robust railway system.
According to MAN, “no mention is made of the need to dredge the various ports outside Lagos State to decongest Tin Can Island and Wharf ports and reduce the cost of moving goods from ports to the factories.”
Equally, the association observed that there was 32.5 per cent reduction in the allocation to agriculture and rural development in the budget.
“The allocation to agriculture and rural development is N80.29bn, which is 32.5 per cent lower than N118.98bn allocation of 2018.”
The statement described as ‘commendable,’ the N15.66bn allocation for promotion and development of agriculture and N2.69bn for extension services, including other projects.
MAN predicted that judging from Nigeria’s budget trends, the proposal might undergo late passage, adding that “the resultant negative effect on the overall economic ambience of the country might be colossal for an economy whose current growth rate was still fragile.”
Analysing the budget further, the association predicted a contraction in investment inflow into the country, owing to an increase in interest rates in developed markets.
It also noted that being an election year, the performance of the budget would, to a large extent, depend on the transparency and credibility of the election.
“There is the need to properly align the assumptions of the budget with economic realities,” it added.

 

Stories by Chinedu Wosu

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Maritime

Customs Cautions Officers On Improper Dressing, Unkempt Beards

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The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has threatened to sanction its officials for improper dressing and unkempt beards.  Other minor violations include use of name tags.
This was contained in a memo issued by the Deputy Comptroller General, Human Resources Development of NCS, A.T. Babani.
The memo number HRD/2021/026 titled: “Introduction of Customs Police Caution Slip in the Service” was dated 10th September, 2021.
The memo stated that the caution slip would be issued in triplicate for minor offences such as improper dressing, use of unapproved name tags, and failure to shave among others.
The service said it has introduced the use of Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) as a law enforcement tool in the service.
The memo reads, “I am directed to bring to your notice that the Comptroller General of Customs has approved the usage of Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) as a law enforcement tool in the service.
“The slip which will be administered by the Customs Police Unit of various Zones/Area Commands would be in triplicate and once issued, a copy shall be forwarded and inserted into the officer’s establishment file.
“The issuance of the Customs Police Caution Slip (CPCS) will include offences such as improper dressing, multi-colour waist belt other than approved one and usage of unapproved name tag, failure to shave, and other sundry minor violations of the second regulation 13 of the Customs and Excise Management Act CAP LFN of 2004 as amended.
“The caution slips would serve as a proactive tool to ensure compliance to rules and regulations.
“First-time offenders, repeated offenders and consistent pattern of offence identified, shall be documented and used for strategic decisions making”.

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Maritime

Stakeholder Tasks RSG, MWUN On Piracy

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The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Rivers State Branch, says the union and the state government need a strong synergy to tackle the act of sea piracy and all forms of criminal activities in the state’s waterways. 
Chairman, MWUN, Rivers state Branch, Comrade Jonah Jumbo, in an interview with The Tide, noted that unlike in Lagos State, there was no synergy between the Rivers State Government and MWUN to curb piracy on the waterways.
“We need to work together to checkmate all forms of criminality, sea piracy and attacks on passenger boats in our waters”, Jumbo said.
Comrade Jumbo insisted that the state government and the union were working in parallel lines, hence the high rate of piracy on the waterways.
Jumbo said, lack of synergy between the state and the union was having negative turns in its operations, thereby not improving marine transport business in the state.
The chairman said the union alone cannot solve the problem of insecurity in the waterways, hence the need for collaborations between the state government and other relevant authorities.
He further noted that Lagos State was doing well in marine transportation because there was a strong synergy between the state government and the union.
“Lagos state maritime business is improving every day with more fleets because the government, stakeholders and the union are working towards ensuring success”, he said.

By: Chinedu Wosu

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Maritime

Inadequate Facilities At MAN Worry Mariners

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The Nigerian Association of Master Mariners (NAMM) has lamented lack of simulators for training of cadets at the Maritime Academy of Nigeria (MAN) in Oron, Akwa Ibom State.
The body also decried lack of ocean-going vessels to enable the cadets of the academy acquire the mandatory sea time experience.
NAMM President, Capt. Tajudeen Alao disclosed this during an interview with newsmen, recently. 
“Training at the Academy had always been as per the International Maritime Organisations (IMO) model courses”, he said.
Capt. Alao said the shortcomings have always been in the areas of lecturers, simulators and international trading ships for practical exposure.
Other challenges include lack of funding, bureaucracy and the Nigerian factor.
“Leadership of the academy too has not been based on professionalism but political consideration. The shipping companies who are end-users have not committed their services to the academy.
“The number of students per class is much more than what is obtainable in the western world. 
“There are no core ship-related courses, not many courses, facilities and disciplines,” Alao said.

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