Lucky Amiwero (NCMDLCA)
Well the year 2019 in the industry has been so badly hit, there have not been any improvement in the maritime industry and the sector instead of moving forward it is going backward. So 2019 has been so bad for the maritime sector, if you look at the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) they contribute nothing. But when you look at the whole thing it is shifting negatively and it is not too good for a country like Nigeria. We are losing in every area, regulations are not complied with, and things are not done properly. So we have a problem with not doing the right thing and these things have to do with the government sometimes and on the other hand, the people. So that is it, the year 2019 has been so bad in the industry.
Chief Andy Best Omenogor (Stakeholder)
This year is the poorest in the industry since I started the business over 25years ago. Because first of all, it has never been in any history since we started this business when we witnessed a situation where trucks cannot enter the ports, I have never seen any situation like that before when the NPA and the shipping companies will connive. How can somebody pay N200, 000 to the task force committee they set up to manage the traffic and people are paying that amount of money to enable them enter the ports and sometimes they even turn the trucks back. They should disband them and if they must work it should be first come, first serve. so how come 2019 the congestion is high. Government should check their statistics and know you put someone in committee and they will turn the committee to money spinning platform.
Chief Remy Ogungbemi (AMRTO)
The fact is that this year we have a very serious challenging environment, the environment was very hostile, claimed even life this year 2019, that is why we are meeting and planning to know how the environment can be more conducive. We are working towards how we start controlling and managing ourselves by ourselves we are not waiting for task force to direct or manage us. We are human being; it is animals like cows that you can direct with sticks. We are consulting on how to make the environment more conducive for us and we are looking forward to a more fruitful and conducive year 2020, by which, I believe that the technical regulator of the ports must have put the necessary infrastructure in place on how we will move away from analogue way of doing business to digital.
Mr. Johnny Ubaka
Our faces are dull, we are not happy, some of us collected loans from the banks and we can’t give it back because of the numerous problems in the nation’s port system. The problems are many and we cannot recall all of them. And by the time we are done with this action, we will come out with a new leaf.
Alhaji Abdullahi Inuwa
We thank God that we are witnessing this year and also for successes recorded although there is a lot of challenges, there are lot of challenges in the maritime industry that generally we are facing. But I know and I can say that there is a little success in that regards based on some of the steps that the federal government has taken, we know there is hope. Some steps like the government trying to ensure ease of doing business, the reform by the customs and the attention that the government has paid to ensure the rehabilitation and reconstruction of port access roads and the express road. I think it is a step in right direction.
Capt. Matthew Alalade
The security of our seafarers is still been threatened, and I would say we perform less than average when it comes to security, but on other aspect I think I will rate us a little bit above average, but when it comes to security we didn’t perform, despite the global summit NIMASA held at Abuja, we can hear the news on kidnapping and hijacking on a weekly basis.
Uche Ejieseme (Custom PRO Tin Can)
My assessment of the maritime industry is to say that it is still work in progress. I would like to appreciate the sector for the upward progression in terms of creativity and innovation that have metamorphosed into some landmark achievements in the sector. Like I stated earlier, it’s still work in progress and I am confident that the passion of the major gladiators will surely enhance the sector.
Pious Ujubounu (Stakeholder)
Cargo is the hallmark of trade and increased in cargo throughput also means increase in the activities in maritime industry; both upstream and downstream, but generally our economy is experiencing a kind of downturn, so we do not have much cargo throughput as we had in previous years, and another thing is that our turnaround time because of the difficulties we have in our port environment, because the port access roads are not good, even the infrastructure inside the port are not good enough, so there are a cacophony of anomy that one couldn’t add up.
Obinna Okafor (NAGAFF Chairman, Ikorodu)
The maritime industry in the last one year have been on a progressive line, but operationally it has not been the best, the policies are good, but we are having problem with the implementation. I think this is because those at the helm of affairs don’t have passion for the industry, so we need more people who have passion for the industry to be at strategic positions. The control system is not there and that’s because those at the helm of affairs are just busy going about their own.