Shipping companies allegedly defy Osinbajo’s task force order

Shipping companies allegedly defy Osinbajo’s task force order

- The task force set up by Nigeria's vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, is to ensure the decongestion of the port

- The shipping companies continue to collect demurrage from importers and refuse to follow instructions

- The report expresses belief that some of the shipping companies are above the law

Shipping companies in Lagos are flouting the directives of the task force set up by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on the decongestion of the port access roads as a report says they have continued collecting demurrage from importers and their agents.

Vanguard reports that the demurrage being collected from the importers and their agents is for the empty containers dropped at the approved holding bays by the task force.

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According to the report, the task force had directed importers and their agents to drop their empty containers at designated holding bays around the port axis.

They instruction was also that a receipt was to be given to such importers and the agent to process claims.

The report said its investigation showed that the shipping companies refused to honour the receipts claiming that they have not received such empty containers.

The report quoted a source as saying that the shipping companies collect between N7,000 and N10,000 daily on every container.

According to the source, the shipping companies seem to be above the law because of their refusal subject themselves to the federal government’s appointed port economic regulator, the Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC).

It was also learnt that holding bays presently being used by the taskforce is almost filled up and the container laden trucks are currently resurfacing on the roads.

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“Every container you see on the road there are empty, all those holding bays they have been using are almost filled up that is why you see the truck lining up again and each container you are seeing on that road, they are collecting demurrage of between N19,300 to N20,000 every day.

“Shipping companies are still collecting demurrage for all those containers that are lining on the roads and that is why they don’t bother about what is happening to us,” the source said. earlier reported that truck and tanker drivers returned to the Oshodi-Apapa expressway blocking the major road and making residents pass through hellish conditions as the gridlock resulting from this continues to spread to adjourning roads.

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