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First step to ease of doing business at ports should be fixing port access roads—BH Report
The sorry state of Lagos Ports access roads has taken a deadly dimension since the setting in of rainy season.
The entire port access roads are in shambles, making all the claims and counter claims on efforts of growing ease of doing business by the federal government to have a resemblance of deception and official lies to investors.
Survey by Business Hilights shows that anybody driving to any of the two major ports of Lagos, that is Tincan and Apapa ports from Oshodi-Apapa highway must part his car somewhere around Coconut at his own risk and jump onto waiting ‘Aboki’ okada raiders who do their jobs without recourse to safety.
Some port users who spoke to our correspondent said many of the Maritime agencies may have been feeding the government with subtle lies because nothing is going on at the ports due to poor access.
Many of the port users say all the maritime agencies of the federal government have failed in terms of the state of the roads which have been like that for more than five years now.
However, some of the officials of the affected agencies have started opening up on the state of the roads.
Only recently, the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) has called on the Federal Government to urgently repair the deplorable port access roads before the rainy season sets in.
Deputy Director, Commercial Shipping Department of the council, Cajetan Agu, made the plea in Lagos, saying the roads were bad and caused a lot of heavy traffic gridlock and damaged goods when trailers fell while dodging potholes.
He confessed that the roads are so bad that “It takes three days to clear cargo from Lome, seven days in Cotonou, four days in Durban in South Africa and five days to clear cargo out of Kenyan ports”.
“The free days given to importers before accumulating demurrage in Nigeria is five days while it is 10 days in Benin Republic.
“It takes 10 days in Cameroon and China to enjoy free period before the accumulation of demurrage starts to count,’’ Agu said.