Though the federal government had been able to convince aggrieved members of the Maritime Workers Union (MWU) to suspend their planned strike over poor access to the ports, government was however, silent on the suggestions put forward by the union during the negotiation to end further licencing of tank farms.
The observed lining of tank farms along Lagos lagoons and even creeks, according to MWU, has a string hand in the intractable occupation of federal highways by petroleum tankers.
The agreement that lead to the suspension of the strike read in parts: “The collaborative efforts of Federal Ministry of Transportation through the NPA, Federal Ministry of Works, Power and Housing, Dangote and Flour Mills on the two kilometres Wharf Road are noted. However, these efforts have not been very appreciable as only 10 per cent of the work has been done till date.
“The meeting therefore called on the lead project company, Dangote, to speed up action in terms of galvanising human and material resources to see that they meet the timeline of the completion of the project in spite of unforeseen challenges. The Federal Government should pursue vigorously the policy of non-establishment of new tank farms in the port areas.
“The sanitary conditions of the surrounding and roads to the ports should be the social corporate responsibility of the NPA and the authority should do the needful to remove the refuse within three months to avoid endangering the lives of workers and port users.”
It added, “The collaboration between the Federal Ministry of Transportation and the concessionaires at the ports in terms of movement of containers by rail should be strengthened so that there is no pillage of trailers on access road to the port.
“The establishment of 340 capacity trailer park by the FMPW&H is a step in the right direction and noteworthy but the meeting appeals that the final stage of the shoreline protection work be completed before the end of the second quarter of 2018.
“A total reconstruction of the major access roads to Tin Can Island Port area from Liverpool Road via Coconut via Sunrise to Mile2 road should be undertaken urgently and in this direction, the FMoT through the NPA is to synergise and consummate the project before the end of the second quarter of 2018. The FMPW&H which has already captured the road to the Tin Can Island Port in its 2018 budget should also do the same for roads leading to other ports nationwide.”