Written by Sarah NEGEDU

Nigeria can develop its infrastructure from transport sector – Bello

The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Shippers Council, NSC, Bar. Hassan Bello, has with the right streamlining of Nigeria’s transportation system and ports processes, the country does not need oil revenue to develop, as needed revenue will be generated through transportation.

Bello stated this during a courtesy visit to the acting chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, Dr. Musa Abubakar.

The NSC boss who led a team to the ICPC to enforce the existing collaboration between the two federal agencies, said with the right collaborative efforts with ICPC will assist a lot in the foregoing direction.

According to him, the NSC is working to make remarkable progress in the ongoing anti-graft war especially in the country’s ports which he however said training by and collaboration with ICPC have aided tremendously.

For instance, the NSC chief executive said before now, lack of standard operating procedures had caused ships to berth longer than necessary in Nigeria’s ports with telling economic consequences, but that with collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP alongside the ICPC, standard the agency developed with the latter have gone a long way to upgrade operations at the ports.

He added that the collaboration has further helped the council in determining schedules of respective agencies operating at the ports and thus increasing efficiency and ridding the place of chaos; for according to him, corruption thrives where there is chaos.

“Corruption thrives in darkness and in opaque conditions; but our efforts are bringing the needed light for the shine that will expose corruption everywhere and make it disappear. But we want to collaborate with ICPC to unveil our technology which we are employing at the ports to stop corruption,” he said.

To underscore his position, the Executive Secretary disclosed that 90% of the imports into the country are under-declared causing the government to lose lots of revenue.

He said the council requires an Advanced Cargo Tracking which would assist in ascertaining the true value of goods being imported ahead of time. This he also said would help in tracking illegally imported weapons adding that, “better electronic clearance of imported goods will help stop corruption at the ports;” saying that, “there is nothing like diversion of goods to nearby ports like the one in Lome. It is purely a matter of procedures which are simpler and faster in that country.”

In his response, the ICPC chief executive, who expressed his delight at the series of collaboration between the two agencies said he was happy that the efforts were yielding results.

Adding however that there was every need for a prompt review of the efforts so far so as to take them to the next level in what he termed “should be a continuous process.” The ICPC chief thus, said his agency was ready to participate in any relevant seminar by NSC to expose participants to latest technology in cargo tracking.”

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