Maritime workers have cautioned of a possible nationwide strike if the Federal Government proceeds with its intention to implement a 50% automatic deduction from the revenue generated by the Nigerian Ports Authority.
This warning was conveyed through a joint statement issued in Lagos by the Senior Staff Association of Statutory Corporations and Government-Owned Companies, along with the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria.
“We recommend that 30 per cent of the revenue internally generated by the Authority could be automatically deducted while 70 per cent is left for the Authority to accomplish its overhead costs and statutory responsibilities, failure of which the Union would have no other option than to withdraw the services of its members from all Ports formations nationwide,” the statement signed by SSASCGOC President Mr Akinola Bodunde and MWUN President General Mr. Adewale Adeyanju reads.
Mr. Bodunde emphasized the severe ramifications such a deduction would have on the operational capabilities of the NPA.
He added, “The reduction in revenue could jeopardize crucial maritime operations such as dredging port channels and maintaining infrastructure, ultimately affecting vessel traffic and port activities.”
Mr. Adeyanju expressed apprehensions regarding the potential effects of the proposed deduction on the workforce and host communities.
“We worry over the NPA’s ability to meet its obligations to host communities, saying that could be compromised, potentially leading to unrest and social upheaval,” he expressed.
Both leaders of the unions urged a reconsideration of the directive to allow for a more reasonable deduction from internally generated revenue. Their emphasis was on the need to uphold operational efficiency and meet obligations to employees and host communities, aiming to prevent disruptions in maritime operations.