Following the chaotic traffic situation caused by empty containers blocking intra and inter-city roads in Apapa, maritime workers in the country have given a 14-day ultimatum to one of the leading terminal operators, APM Terminal, to clear the roads of its empty containers.
In a letter addressed to the Managing Director of the company signed by the Deputy Secretary General, Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), Mr. Edwin Sambo, the workers said the blocking of the roads with empty containers had caused untold hardship to maritime workers and Nigerians.
According to MWUN, “We are deeply concerned and seriously disturbed by the blockage of the Apapa Port Access road with empty containers in the quest for delivery at your terminal. The situation renders movement inside and outside the port impassable with traffic always at a standstill. Economic and social activities within the area are also negatively affected and with business at its lowest ebb.
“The security of lives and property in and around the environment has deteriorated so much so that rape and brigandage have become the order of the day. Workers, port users and the public in general trek long distance for hours before accessing the port and their work place. It has compounded or worsened the already existing Apapa gridlock which the Lagos State and federal agencies are still battling to contain.”
The blockage, it stated, also impedes the executive order issued by the federal government on the ease of doing business at the nation’s seaports.
The statement added: “Consequently, your management is hereby given a 14-day Notice of Ultimatum from the date of this letter to put all the necessary arrangement in motion to ensure that the blockage caused by the empty containers are totally cleared at the end of this notice for business and other port related activities to resume at the port.
Please be informed that we shall not be held liable for whatever action we might deem fit to take in the event of your refusal to get your empty containers off the road.”