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Access card: Agents accuse PTML terminal of extortion

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Agents operating at the Ports and Terminal Multiservice Limited (PTML) have accused the management of the terminal of extorting N15,000 each from clearing agents in exchange for access Cards which guaranty entry into the port terminal. This is even as the PTML has stated that what it collects from agents is N10,000 for biometric access cards.

Speaking to the Nigerian Tribune exclusively, an agent, Chief Chukwu Osita Patrick, who also doubles as the National President of the Save Nigeria Freight Forwarders Importers and Exporters Coalition (SNFFIEC) stated that PTML compels agents to pay N15,000 each to obtain access cards which guaranty’s entry into the terminal for one year.

According to Chief Patrick, “I have been asked to come and pay N15,000 to obtain Access Card for the PTML terminal, but I have refused bluntly. I am suing the terminal for extorting Nigerians. How can Nigerians be asked to pay to enter into a place in their own country in order to transact business?

“My workers were also asked to pay same amount, and I have told them that if they do so, it is from their purse. I won’t allow myself to become a slave in my own country. I have business transactions to conduct inside the PTML terminal, but they told me that I have to pay to enter inside their terminal.

“There is no port in Nigeria that does that. Yet we have port regulators here in Lagos, and they are all watching while the PTML is extorting Nigerians under the guise of controlling or monitoring who goes in and out of their facility. This is totally unacceptable.

“I am going to court over this. I need a court of law to explain to me where it is in our law that agents have to pay to enter into a port terminal to conduct business transactions.”

When contacted, the General Manager of the PTML terminal, Mr Tunde Keshinro explained that it is incorrect to state that agents pay N15,000 to gain access into PTML terminal.

“PTML charges N10,000 for five biometric access cards issued to a verified clearing agency with valid Nigeria Customs form C 30. This is issued to five named clearing agents operating under the clearing agency. An extra charge of N2,000 is charged for any extra biometric access card requested by a clearing agency, given some clearing agencies want to have more than five representatives.

“This is a one-time payment as the access cards is renewed yearly without any extra or additional fees based on a revalidated Customs form c30.

“Kindly note that the PTML biometric access card is synonymous to the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) port pass with additional biometric features and documentary control for Shipping Agency and Port Terminal cargo release as well as delivery processes.”

It would be recalled that the Founder of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) had raised similar alarm over the issuance of Access Cards at the PTML to gain entry into the terminal.

The post Access card: Agents accuse PTML terminal of extortion appeared first on Tribune.

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