Confusion as NRC stops cargo evacuation at Apapa port

A cross-section of importers have lamented not getting prior notices ahead of the suspension of rail services to the Apapa port.

The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) in a letter dated August 20, 2020, and addressed to the APM Terminals, Apapa managing director, stated that rail services to the ports would be suspended from September 15 to November 14 2020, to give room for the completion of the standard gauge rail project.

However, when the Nigerian Tribune visited the ports on Tuesday, the date set for rail services suspension, some cargo owners were seen lamenting that they had scheduled their containers for rail evacuation by next week.

One of the cargo owners’ representatives, Yemi Olalekan, “Some of us just got wind of the suspension of rail services to the ports today. This is not fair because we have already planned our budgets on the rail evacuation arrangement. Now, I have to start looking for alternative means of evacuation which includes barge evacuation, and this is much more expensive than the rail mode of evacuation.

“A decision like this ought to have been made public a month ago so that some of us that are expecting cargoes would have been prepared ahead.”

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