A stevedore; Chief Michael Ubogu has blamed entrenched corruption and the often-claimed ‘Nigerian factor’ for the hiccups being experienced in the implementation of the electronic call-up system that was introduced by the Nigerian Ports Authourity (NPA) in February.
Chief Ubogu, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Micura Services Limited, a stevedoring company, said in an interview with our correspondents last week that, it is saddening that the e-call up system is facing challenges, even as he alleged that the problems were man-made.
Even though he expressed optimism about the new system, he said: “I also saw the call up system that just collapsed and a lot of people actually thought it was the best thing that ever happened to solve the perennial traffic situation, but unfortunately, the Nigeria factor came to play, sabotage came in and you and I know that it is dead on arrival as it is at this point”.
Justifying his allegation of sabotage, he said, “it is sabotage because a lot of people who were not benefitting from that system will have to find a way to kill it, that’s the Nigeria factor that I meant, perhaps they were not getting inducement so they feel the only way is to sabotage it and kill it. And that’s exactly what has happened. You and I know that, for now, the corrupt system is now working; so the gridlock is also back to where it was before”.
Chief Ubogu advised that, for the NPA e-call up to be successful, the agency must insist on that companies must has holding bays. He stressed that, the solution is to have more holding bays and ensure more discipline on the part of truckers.
“First is to have holding bays for trucks and to ensure that they dissipate all their energy to see that the e- call up system works, because if the e-call-up system works, you will see that the traffic will be a thing of the past, and also if there is proper security then most of these articulated vehicles will only work at night, they can work during the day inside the port, but after office hours in the night they can leave one location for another. There was a particular time they were doing that, but they complained that they were being robbed, so I think the government can also look at that; if you look at it, most of these things are caused by indiscipline”, he said.