The Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Mr. Mohammed Bello Koko, has issued a stern warning against the illegal stripping of containers along the port access road, this is even as he vowed that any trucker that is caught in the act risked being delisted from the eto platform controlled by the Truck Transit Park (TTP) Limited.
Koko stated this during a visit to the stripping yards at TinCan Port on Friday. While addressing concerns surrounding container stripping, he emphasized that stripping is a legal activity, but engaging in it illegally is what makes it an issue.
The NPA boss noted that one of the problems is the tendency for trucks to linger after stripping, causing traffic disruptions.
He said the NPA has been vigilant in monitoring and preventing such occurrences. This is just as he further revealed that in the past, stripping took place along roads until a ban was implemented, and collaboration with the Police was established, to seize such items and penalize those found stripping containers on roads.
Addressing the scarcity in some of the stripping yards, the Managing Director acknowledged the impact of economic challenges on cargo flow. Despite business downturns, he assured that trucks wouldn’t be allowed to park along roads for stripping activities. This is even as he revealed that proposals for well-equipped stripping yards, referred to as divining yards, have been received, signaling a potential shift from informal stripping.
When questioned about round-tripping, where trucks seek additional business after finishing stripping, the NPA boss explained the implementation of the Eto system to prevent such practices. He said trucks are required to leave the port area and find business in designated pre-gate areas or truck parks.
Regarding sustainability, he informed that the NPA has collaborated with other government agencies and the Lagos state government to ensure that nothing of such take place along the port access road
The Managing Director also emphasized the need for regular supervision and disclosed that meetings are held regularly to ensure the effective operation of the Eto system.
In response to questions about penalties for illegal stripping, Koko outlined measures taken by the NPA about truckers engaging in stripping along roads. He said they face delisting from the Eto platform, preventing them from obtaining entry tickets.
He said NPA has also collaborated with other security agencies to stop delisted trucks from conducting business in the port.
He also warned that stripping yards that violate operational rules risk down temporarily, with the possibility of non-renewal of land leases for repeated offenses. He noted that these stringent measures aim to maintain order and safety within the port environment.