Maritime Workers Union Seeks Renewal of Port Concessionaires Lease Agreement, Lauds Indigenous Operators

President General of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria(MWUN) Dr. Adewale Adeyanju has called on the federal government to renew the lease agreement with port concessionaires while requesting more support for indigenous port operators.

Adeyanju who said this in Lagos during a media interview, said the port operators have contributed to the economy and supported workers interest by retaining their employees despite unfavourable operating environment

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The labour called on President Bola Tinubu, Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola, the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and the other organisations like the Bureau for Public Enterprises (BPE) to give support to indigenous operators in the port.

According to him, the indigenous port operators contributed in ensuring the sector was not totally dominated by only foreign interest and thereby made Nigeria to have a sense of participation and belonging.

He added that with the support of the indigenous operators, Nigeria has made some progress as there has been some value addition and reinvestment of their profits back into the country.

“We are of the view that their agreements should be renewed. They have tried in the area of job creation, supporting the economy and standing by the country through difficult times. They have proven to be dependable employers and friends of the workers. We want them to continue because they have experience and would do better than any new operator brought in now.

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“We also want the government to specially support indigenous terminal operators because they are better representatives of our national interest in the port business. They are Nigerians and are serving our national interest more than others who may likely take their gains to their home countries

“These indigenous operators plough back their profits into Nigeria and they have helped the country to evolve a sense of belonging in the port sector . They are not taking their monies out into other countries and they are our best foot forward in our desire as a country to have great port operators.

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“If not for these indigenous operators who joined the business at inception of the concession regime, the sector would have been dominated by foreigners only and this doesn’t speak well of us . The Union believe those people who represented Nigeria on the list of private terminal operators in this concession era should be honored with renewal of their lease agreement

“We like the kind of support, Festus Keyamo, Minister of Aviation is giving to organisation like Air Peace. We are calling on our Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola and other functionaries related to the maritime industry to fully support our own terminal operators to grow indigenous investments and expand the chances of job creation for more Nigerians in the industry.

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“Operators like SIFAX, ENL,PTOL and other Nigerian owned terminal operators have demonstrated capacity and potential to deliver world class service, if given the opportunity and enabling operating environment.
The foreigners are trying but Nigerians should be encouraged to participate and grow in the sector ” he said

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