NIMASA Threatens To Shut Down Non-Compliant Ports

It may not be business as usual as the Nigerian Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has threatened to cripple operations of ports that are non-compliant to the International Ships and Ports Facility Security (ISPS) code.

The Director-General of NIMASA, Mr Patrick Akpobolokemi said this recently at a seminar organized by the Shippers' Association of Lagos State (SALS).

According to him, NIMASA as the Designated Authority (DA) has come out to ensure compliance to the ISPS code in the Nigerian ports as part of the expected features of the new port order.

Out of the 121 ports in the country, Akpobolokemi said, only 49 are currently compliant to the ISPS code.

"I will inform you here that so far, out of the 121 ports in Nigeria, only 49 are ISPS compliant. NIMASA is serious about the compliant status of our ports.

"All the ports that are non-compliant would be shut down until they are, and even if not shut down, am sure there will be no international shipping business to those ports. There is no doubt about it," Akpobolokemi threatened.

Speaking through the agency's Head, Strategy and Policy, Alhaji Ibrahim Jibril, Akpobolokemi however, said that the major ports are listed among the ones that are ISPS compliant.

The NIMASA boss also canvassed for the rehabilitation of the rail system that connects to the port. This, he said, will create a lot of relief to the road sector that has been beaten in recent times.

“This forum should take a close look at the ports access roads because the roads have done lots of damage.

"Access to the port has rendered many businesses useless. NIMASA is collaborating with the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) through the federal ministry of transport (FMOT), and I believe they are making effort to bringing back the rail line, “Akpobolokemi said.