Shipping Lines hijack Osinbajo
- FG,UNDP to Launch new port operating standards
The planned take off of the re-introduced Advanced Cargo Declaration System(ACD) called Cargo Tracking Note(CTN) may have divided President Mohammed Buhari and his Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.
With the approval of the CTN re-introduction gotten from the Federal Executive Council(FEC), MMS Plus gathered that a request for a take off date was submitted to PMB who in turn minuted it to Osinbajo, whose duty it is to oversee the economy.
However, following the pressure from the critics of CTN implementation spearheaded by the multi-national shipping lines with a boost from the former head of interim national government, Chief Ernest Shonekan, Osinbajo resolved to keep the request in view. But when contacted, PMB directed that Osinbajo should not just fast-track the implementation but forward the file to him. Buhari’s action was informed by the immense benefits of CTN to the economy, especially as it is a system practised in most parts of the world, with many countries in West and Central Africa fully compliant, MMS Plus gathered.
Following this, soon the implementation of CTN will take off, especially as it is considered indispensable in line with the compliance requirements of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO’s) International Ships and Ports Security (ISPS)Code for the safety of ships and port facilities.
The decisions to introduce CTN in West and Central African Sub-region were first made at a workshop organized by the Union of African Shipowners’ Council(UASC) in collaboration with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development(UNCTAD) in February, 2002.
Subsequently, CTN was first introduced in Garbon and Congo by their shippers’ councils. Among other African countries operating CTN are: Angola, Senegal, Guinea, Benin Republic; they have all adopted e-CTN operation.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Shippers’ Council(NSC) has explained severally that the re-introduced CTN is at no cost to shippers.
In a related development, the Federal Government in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme(UNDP) and other agencies has concluded plans to adopt a Standard Operating Procedure(SOP) in the nation’s port system.
MMS plus gathered that this is aimed at reducing all forms of corruption at the ports to the barest minimum, as all government agencies, private operators and associations that provides services at the ports have been asked to submit their standard operating procedures which will be warehoused under a common industry portal for easy access to the public.
The Port Steering Committee in charge of this initiative is billed to brief the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Transport, Alhaji Mohammed Bashair, this week in Abuja for onward formal launch soon after briefing the Vice- President.