10 Years Into Port Concession: Unregistered Dockworkers Resurface At Terminals

There are strong indications that the pre-port concession cleansing of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), which included registration of all dockworkers and removal of several others from the ports, have broken down.
Shipping Position Daily confirmed that hundreds of unregistered dockworkers, who claim to be members of the Dockworkers Branch of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), have found their ways back to the terminals, a development which may precipitate unrests in port operations.
Our correspondents confirmed that leaders of the union are aware of the development whereby those who are not eligible to work are already fomenting trouble, but the union leaders claim to be helpless.
Insider sources confirmed to our correspondent that the unregistered dockworkers’ comeback into the port is aided by unit heads and district officers, allegedly for political reasons.
According to them, the unregistered dockworkers work hand-in-hand with the district chairmen and unit heads.
Sources also disclosed that the unregistered dockworkers are known as “blood tonic”, and that the unregistered dockworkers get their ‘salaries’ from unit members by way of donations.
One source said: “Our leaders have been able to bring those blood tonic back to the ports in order to foment trouble and we know it will boomerang when the time comes”.
He confirmed that the recent demonstration at the ENL Terminal in Apapa port was master-minded by the unregistered dockworkers.
But, while confirming the infiltration of unregistered dockworkers into the port, President of dockworkers branch of the MWUN; Comrade Adewale Adeyanju accused the Nigeria‎ Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) of failing to control the crowd that troop into the ports.
He confirmed that fake dockworkers have taken over ENL terminal. He blamed the influx on the non-implementation of the International Ships and Ports Security (ISPS) facility Code.
Comrade Adewale Adeyanju in a chat with Shipping Position Daily in his office last weekend alleged that there has been a total breakdown in the implementation of the ISPS Code at some of the concessioned terminals
Adeyanju said that the standard practice at the port is that each dockworker must have their terminal operator’s identification cards and NIMASA identification cards before NPA can grant them access into the port‎. He however said that this is not being implemented.
He alleged that the protest carried out by dockworkers working‎ at ENL Terminal recently was hijacked by some dockworkers who have since been sacked by the terminal for stealing and other vices.
‎”Unregistered dockworkers infiltrating the port has to do with NIMASA because they have their port labour officers through the stevedoring companies, I would not know all the dockworkers, it is NIMASA that employed them through the stevedoring contractors”
“The law is very clear, if you are not registered as a dockworker by NIMASA‎, it is N1million or six months imprisonment, those people that are infiltrating these ENL workers, majority of them have left ENL for almost six years, but when they heard that they are about paying workers, they started coming in and this is why you see agitation at the port”
‎”Why do we have the ISPS code, we know what it says; that if you are not a worker you have no right to enter the terminal, we are talking about porosity of the port and influx of people into the ENL terminal, not only ENL, there are other terminals like that and they need to improve on this so that infiltration will be eradicated‎” he said.