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Extortionists take over e-call up system as NPA crisis lingers

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Nigerian Ports Authority

Stakeholders in the maritime industry have lamented that some individuals are taking advantage of the crisis rocking the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to further destroy the e-call up the system and worsen the state of the ports.

The stakeholders, who spoke to The Guardian, said extortionists at the port corridors have stepped up their game to exploit the truckers while the NPA management is facing a crisis.

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The Deputy National President, Air Logistics, National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), Dr. Segun Musa, said the involvement of security operatives has always been an issue to the e-call up system.

He said the security operatives are now controlling the highest number of haulage in the port corridors, as some of them are now buying trucks and making hundreds of millions daily.

Musa lamented that, while the e-call up system has been a fraud on its own, the security operatives are frustrating truck owners, just as the e-call up system allows abnormalities within the port corridor.

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“We don’t need to have security operatives at the port corridors; it should be that when a truck that is not called up approaches the port corridor, even if there are a thousand trucks, they should all be turned back. The law is already there along with the holistic measures to be carried out on the defaulters,” he said.

Chairman, Logistics Practitioners Association of Nigeria, Godwin Ikeji, said the NPA management crisis has served as a distraction, thereby enabling extortionists to take advantage and extort truck drivers more.

He said, though the e-call up system has had its issues, certain individuals have leveraged the system to make money due to their greed for wealth.

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He noted that the youths are no longer interested in meaningful and gainful jobs, as they are now looking for easy ways to make money in the industry, which he said is “bleeding.”
“The NPA management crisis will affect the e-call up system. The extortionists are having their way due to the crisis,” he said.

The Vice-Chairman of the National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) Dry Cargo Section, Abdullahi Inuwa, said the current crisis facing the NPA management will give room for saboteurs to successfully destroy the system.

He said the saboteurs of the system are already taking advantage of the NPA crisis to further carry out their extortions on truckers, which he said would affect the progress of the system.

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