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Maritime ex-president, Nted links peace at ports to good leadership, training


The immediate past President of the Maritime Workers’ Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Comrade Emmanuel Tony Nted, has linked the present peace in the ports to strong quality leadership.

He disclosed this at a thanksgiving in his honour, after 28 years of meritorious service as a maritime worker.

He said about 6000 workers were trained locally, and about 500 in the international scene on leadership and collective bargaining, during his time.

The union leader added that the training had reduced the Apapa gridlock and other disturbances then at the port.

He said the ports had engaged in series of trainings and empowerment programmes for the dockworkers to facilitate the existing peace.

According to him, the level of training for the dockworkers had changed their perception from the hitherto tag of pilfering and mayhem at the dock.

Nted grew through the ranks and file of the union to become the union president before his retirement.

On how he took care of worker’s welfare during his tenure, the labour leader said he established collective bargaining and minimum standard for the dockworkers.

He said this was improved upon daily so that the workers would be able to retire with benefits.

“It is a plus in the maritime industry because dock job is a casual job. In the past, when you retire, you go home without anything. But the story has changed now, as you must go home with something after retirement,” he said.

Nted told The Guardian in an interview that he had some challenges during his tenure as the president general of the union, which he was able to surmount.

He said: “We still talk about a lot of bottle necks because the operators always complain, for instance that a vessel that is supposed to be discharged in three days often do so in five days.

“That means that there was a lot of traffic in the port, which was not caused by bad roads, but a lot of agencies like quarantine, police and port health.”

According to him, the bottleneck was worsened by every of these agencies wanting to inspect a vessel.

He said his team was able to talk to the government on how they could reduce the number of agencies in the port to the barest minimum. 

He explained that the efforts made by the Federal Government were not successful, as the issue kept repeating itself.

He disclosed that he also had challenges with some workers, because majority of the dockworkers are not enlightened, leaving Pidgin English as the medium of communication.

Nted advised the present leadership of the union led by Comrade Adeyanju…to be open and learn to work to build a strong relationship. 

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