Clearing agents, NPA at war over planned eviction from office complex

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Clearing agents with office space at the Container Complex, Tin Can Island port, on Thursday urged  the management of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to rescind its decision to evict them from the complex.

The plea came on the heels of a peaceful protest staged on Wednesday by the agents over a quit notice given by Seaview properties Ltd., a subsidiary of NPA.

The Chairman, Containerised Office Complex, Mr Chukuemeka Shedrack, who made the plea in a statement in Lagos, said that the NPA management should not throw them out since there was no alternative provided for them.

In a letter dated Feb. 11, 2016, Seaview propertied Ltd., asked everyone to vacate his office space on or before Sept. 30, 2016.

Shedrack said that the Managing Director of NPA, Malam Habib Abdullahi, had not granted them audience since the letter was written to them in February.

“We are all agents but they want to displace us from here. I do not know where they want us to go,’’ he said.

“They (NPA) have not provided any alternative for us. This was why we wrote a letter to the managing director so that we can hear from him because to displace all the crowd from here, where do they want us to go?

“The management of NPA has been saying they do not want people loitering around the port and now they want to displace us with no alternative.

“If they push us out of this place, where do they want us to go?

“We are not security risk here because we are doing our legitimate jobs and we have been here for more than 20 years. We have been here doing our normal jobs and we have never been security threats to anyone,’’ Shedrack said.

He, however, urged the Federal Government to intervene before the manegement of NPA sent them out of the complex.

“We are stakeholders and we are legitimate business people who generate revenue for the Federal Government, ‘’ Shedrack said.

Also speaking, the Vice- Chairman of the complex Alhaji Ajisafe said they should not be sent out of the office space they have been occupying for over two decades.

 

He asked where they want them to move their office to if they are evicted by th port Authority.

“We have been here for over twenty years and we have never been security threat to anyone let alone the port. They should not thrown us out because where do they want over 1000 of us to go if we are thrown out of the complex,” he told our correspondent on Wednesday.

Effort to get the response of NPA on the planned eviction of members of the office complex proved abortive as series of text messages sent to the General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Capt. Ihenacho Ebubeogu were not replied.

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