By Ajibola Abayomi,
President General of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) Comrade Emmanuel Nted have decried the poor state of access road leading to various ports across the country.
At a press conference in Lagos late on Thursday, Nted urged the Federal Government to expedite action on the repairs, blaming the present administration for what he described as abandonment of a critical national economic infrastructure.
He said the poor state of the roads have led to untimely deaths for many people while causing delays for movements of persons and cargoes to and from the ports.
”The Federal government and Nigerian Ports Authority told us that Julius Berger will begin work on the roads but as we speak there is nothing to show on the ground.
”The abandonment of access roads to the ports which has been in the state of disrepair for several years despite the union relentless efforts at drawing the attention of government to address the situation.
”As we speak, the roads have become death trap to every road user despite strong assurances from Federal Government and Nigerian Ports Authority that the contract had been awarded. There is nothing on ground to show that contract has been awarded.
While commending the government for banning car importation through the land borders, Nted appealed for a month of grace to enable importers whose vehicles were trapped to clear them out before full enforcement is applied.
He added that the government should meet with all local vehicle assembly plant and indigenous car manufacturers to address the challenges facing car production in the country.
Nted announced that a new President General and other leaders of the union will be elected at the union’s 4th Quadrennial Delegates Conference on March 17, 2017 in Uyo Akwa Ibom State.
In response to reporters’ questions , Nted disclosed that he does not know how many members the union has as Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) is supposed to have a full list of all dockworkers in Nigeria.
He accused NIMASA of not keeping an up to date register but that the Central Working Committee has approved that all constitutionally eligible members are free to vote and be voted for at the election.
”By this resolution,all branches of Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria have officially been notified of availability of nomination forms for various national offices and election guidelines. All committees of the election have been approved by the Central Working Committee in session.In accordance with the union’s constitution,a free fair and credible election will be conducted”