FG approves N180m for PSTT to fight corruption at Nigerian seaports

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The Federal Ministry of Transportation has announced that N180 million has been allocated to the Port Standing Task Team (PSTT), which will be used to combat bribery and other forms of maritime crime across the country’s seaports.

This was stated by Dr. Magdalene Ajani, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, during the 3rd roundtable on Maritime Sector Reforms: “Consolidating the Gains,” which took place in Lagos on Wednesday.

Both the Convention on Business Integrity (CBI) and the Maritime Anti-Corruption Network (MACN) were responsible for organizing the roundtable.

Ajani was represented by Babatunde Sule, who mentioned that the Federal Government instructed the Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) to provide funds and operational vehicles for the PSTT. Babatunde Sule was in charge of representing Ajani.

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Ajani added that the government agencies had been given the instruction to provide N60 million each for the Port Standing Task Team so that it could continue its crusade against corruption throughout the nation’s ports.

The policy governing port administration is set up in such a way that users of the port have the ability to demand, track, and ensure greater compliance with Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) by government agencies.

As a result, there have been fewer instances of corrupt demands in relation to the clearance of vessels.

‘The government’s capacity to establish policy on compliance systems and collaborate with the private sector and civil society to improve trade flows and the ease of doing business is being strengthened,’ she stated. ‘This will help improve the ease of doing business.
She stated that the ministry, through the National Security Council (NSC), the Technical Unit on Government and Anti-Corruption Reforms (TUGAR), and other agencies, believed that Nigeria was in a position to improve its standing by further institutionalizing its reforms and continuously maintaining them.

The National Coordinator of the PSTT, Mr. Moses Fadipe, has confirmed that the operations of the task team have been given approval. He has also stated that the NSC is the only agency that has responded to the government’s instruction.

He disclosed the fact that other agencies, such as NIMASA and NPA, had not yet provided a response, and the PSTT had not received anything from these organizations.

In the past few years, the Nigerian maritime sector has made significant progress toward promoting efficiency and transparency, as Fadipe pointed out in his observation.

“The PSTT has played a significant role in transforming the sector through its commendable monitoring and enforcement of adherence to the provisions of the Nigerian Ports Process Manual and in its discharge of other ancillary mandates. This has led to a significant increase in efficiency and productivity throughout the industry.

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“The interventions of the task team have led to a reduction in inefficiency and corruption, and there has been a positive impact on the economy as a result of these changes.”

“Strict monitoring and enforcement of joint boarding of vessels procedure, transparency in monitoring, strict monitoring of joint cargo examinations, and the dismantling of illegal checkpoints and extortion points have all contributed to the improvement of the sector,” he explained. “Strict monitoring of joint cargo examinations has also contributed to the improvement of the sector.”

 

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