The Permanent Secretary , Federal Ministry of Transportation, Dr. Magdalene Ajani,  has called on Agencies under the Ministry’s purview to support the Ports Standing Task Team to enable it actualise Executive Order  001 on Ease of Doing Business in Nigerian Ports. 

The Permanent Secretary, who was represented by the Deputy Director,  Maritime Services, Adam Ofie at the Flag Off of the second phase (Operation Free the Ports Corridors) along Apapa-Tin-Can- Coconut-Berger Yard-Mile 2-Orile-Ijora SIFAX today in Apapa, Lagos State, said this became imperative as the ports hold the key to a vibrant economy for the nation. 

“Thus the purpose of the flag off is on compliance function, solicit support for funding  from Agencies (NPA, NSC & NIMASA ), synergize with the relevant Security Agents and the Ministry in order to ensure how best to enforce compliance,  explore the ways in which a stronger compliance function through sanctions-based compliance  (negative incentives) and rewards-based compliance (positiveincentives) can be achieved,” she said.

While commending the PSTT for the successes recorded so far,  she urged them to intensify efforts at eliminating traffic gridlocks and corrupt practices  that have become impediments to Ease of Doing Business in the Ports.

According to her, Operation Free the Ports Corridor, an offshoot of the Nigerian Ports Process Manual ” is a focused action plan that is expected to be one of the key indicators for the implementation of Executive Order 001 in the Port sector.”

Speaking earlier,  the Executive Secretary,  Nigerian Shippers’ Council,  Emmanuel Jime,  praised the members of the PSTT for their doggedness even in the face of life threatening challenges. 

Giving an overview of the successes and challenges recorded with phase one of Operation Free the Ports Corridors, the National Coordinator,  Moses Fadipe, said,: 
“Many industry players, observers and commentators have acknowledged that our bold step to rid the ports’ corridors of illegal checkpoints and other forms of corrupt practices have yielded tremendous successes. This is most evident in the sanity established in movement of traffic in the outbound route of Apapa Port gate to Ijora. This route which is a distance of about 2.6km was the focus of the task team during the first phase of operations,” he said.

Similarly,  he thanked the Ministry, the Security Agencies and other relevant Stakeholders for their support in the successes recorded with the phase one.

During the goodwill/remarks and feedback session, speaker after speaker praised the PSTT for restoring sanity to the port corridor while calling on Government and other stakeholders to help fix the port access roads which is contributory to the traffic congestion. 

The highlight of the occasion was a tour of the 15.6 km stretch of the second phase beginning from Apapa to Ijora SIFAX.

Recall that the first phase Operation Free the Ports Corridors was flagged off 14th April,  2022 at the same venue.

Eric Ojiekwe
D, Press & Public Relations
25th June, 2022
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