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Strike: Union disrupt economic activities at Lagos ports

The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) on Tuesday disrupted economic activities at the Apapa and Tin-Can Island Ports.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the ports were shut down in line with the two-day warning strike by the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC).

The action was as a result of the escalating hardships and suffering among citizens across the country, occasioned by the removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government.

The labour union is agitating the non-implementation of some of the resolutions reached from their previous meetings, by the Federal Government.

NAN correspondent, who monitored the level of compliance to the action, reports that the port gates leading to both the Apapa and Tin-Can Island seaports were all locked.

Mrs Joy Onome, Public Relations Officer of the Association of Nigeria Licensed Customs Agent (ANLCA) told NAN that they could not access the ports when they came out for operations.

“The impact will be very enormous because this will lead to congestion at the port.

“Now, we are also talking about shipping companies and terminal operators charges, what will happen to that? Who will pay for them?

“At the end of the day, demurrage is going up because we are wasting ample time,” she said.

Onome noted that the containers that were meant to be dropped for examination did not take place, while envisaging the same to be the case for Wednesday.

“We want a situation where three additional days will be given to us because of the strike, so that we will be able to cushion the effect,” he said.

Also speaking, a transporter, Yusuf Liadi, said that not a truck had exited nor accessed the port.

He, however, advised that already cleared cargoes be allowed to exit the port, saying importers would accrue more demurrage and shipping charges.

This, he noted, would also be detrimental to the already fragile economy.

“We are already suffering in this country, in fact, we are suffocating. For instance, I left my house early this morning for Apapa to transport an already cleared container to owners’ warehouse only to be told now that there is a strike.

“No consignment will be allowed to move. This is double tragedy for the agent and importers, because they will pay demmurage and storage charges to shipping companies and terminal operators.

“Also, government should provide palliative, the suffering is much. I spent over N5,000 to come to Apapa due to the subsidy removal. Government should do something before it becomes too late,” he said.

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