Managing Director, Nigerian Ports Authority, Hadiza Bala Usman

The Nigerian Ports Authority NPA has designated a total of 17 truck parks with capacity of over 3,500 trucks used for the haulage of various kinds of cargo comprising imports and exports, fish, refrigerated containers and other flatbed trucks under its electronic call-up system also codenamed ETO.

This new categorisation comes two weeks after the introduction of the ETO, designed to fine tune the processes with a view to eliminating the teething challenges associated with the ETO.

According to a statement by the Assistant General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications Division of the NPA, Ibrahim Nasiru, the new categorisation is in line with the desire of the management of the authority to deepen the electronic call-up system with a view to making movement of trucks seamless and ultimately eliminate traffic congestion on ports’ access roads in Apapa and environs.

Under the new system, conducive environment has been provided for export cargo while truckers in this category are encouraged to ensure they complete all documentations required by the Nigeria Customs Service, terminal operators and shipping lines before approaching the ports, as those who fail to complete these documentations will be denied access to the ports.

The NPA also warns that transporters and truck owners who fail use the approved truck parks based on the categorisation would not be able to access any of the country’s seaports.

 It was however gathered that the authority is currently working with relevant government agencies including the Nigerian Export Promotion Council NEPC and other stakeholders to ensure that all the teething problems were resolved and efficient transport system restored.

While appreciating the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu for his commitment towards ending the truck congestion through the enforcement of extant rules, NPA also expressed gratitude

to all stakeholders and associations for their cooperation towards the successful implementation of the regime of reforms and hereby solicits continued support to make the new system even more efficient.

The statement reads in part: “The authority is pleased that operations have justified the conviction that we have finally found the solution to the problem of truck congestion on the access roads into the Lagos Ports Complex and the Tin Can Island Ports.

“Although, we have experienced teething problems as would be expected of innovations like this, the Authority is pleased that these issues are being tackled as they arise, and that steady progress is being made in the process.

“As part of efforts to deepen the impact of ETO and make the movement of trucks more seamless, the NPA, after consultations with stakeholders arrived at the following categorisation of trucks parks as batching points for all trucks doing business at the ports: Transporters and truck owners who do not use the approved truck parks based on the categorisation detailed above, would be unable to access the ports.

“While the authority is working with the NEPC to arrive at a more conducive environment for the operation of export cargo owners, the authority wishes to state that truckers in this category should ensure they complete all documentations required by the Nigeria Customs Service, terminal operators and shipping lines before approaching the ports. Failure to complete the documentation will be met with denial of access into the ports”.