Nigerian freight forwarders warn of strike

The National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders, (NAGAFF),  have warned they might strike over the alleged extortion by shipping companies operating at the seaport.

Ibrahim Tanko, the National Coordinator of the NAGAFF 100% Compliance Team, stated this to the News Agency of Nigeria, (NAN).

“The shipping companies engage in unnecessary extortions of our transporters for up to N150,000 before dropping empty containers which are then passed back to us before returning our container cards,” he said.

The association also complained the depletion of container deposit refunds and undue debits on equipment detention.

He explained that the issue with detention equipment had led to repeated clash between transporters and principals.

“We are also being subjected to incessant network issues which lead to inability to raise invoices and transmit TDOs to which we lose not less than N10 million per day.

“The shipping companies also engage in deceitful demand of opening of importer account/extortions before releasing invoice,” he added.

He revealed that freight forwarders are losing N50 million daily to the willful transfer of containers against the wish, consent or approval of consignees; and are also subjected to illegal transfer charges against the directives of the Nigerian Shippers’ Council.

He added that as a result of their negligence or lack of capacity, the shipping companies foist on them undue equipment detention charges ranging from N200,000 per 1/40ft and N100,000 per 1/20ft multiplied by 1,000 containers. They have therefore issued a two-week ultimatum for their grievances to be addressed.

“Against this background, we wish to notify you that from October 25 to Nov. 10, if these issues raised above are not properly addressed, we will withdraw our services,” Tanko warned.

He also stated that the letter addressed to all the shipping companies was also copied to all the government agencies, security agencies and other stakeholders.

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