Wharf rats return to Nigerian ports after several years

The Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) has revealed that cargo pilfering activities, which was a norm prior to the port reform of 2006, is now back at the ports. This is even as the Union gave it’s District and Unit Heads a 14 days ultimatum to rid the ports of unregistered Dockworkers who are majorly the ones pilfering cargoes inside the ports.

Disclosing this on Wednesday in Lagos while briefing the Unions District and Unit Heads of development in the Union, the President-General of MWUN, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju expressed dissatisfaction on how the name of the union is being dragged in the mud with recent reports of pilfering of cargoes in the ports.

As a result, he called on the branch, district and unit executives to flush out any unregistered dockworker from the port within fourteen days saying failure to comply, will attract a penalty.

Adeyanju added that the illegal dockworkers who infiltrate the port were in connivance with some bad elements of the union who are not satisfied with their salaries.

According to the MWUN President General, “Enough is enough. We are tired of a group of people dragging the name of registered Dockworkers in the mud. It is time for us all to stand up and make sure that we flush them out.

“This is a directive to the President of the dockworkers’ branch of MWUN, and I am giving you fourteen days ultimatum to make sure that all the district and units head flush out port rats among them.”

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He stated further that any officer found culpable of harbouring any illegal dock worker in the terminal would be expelled from the port, even as he added that the executives could not absolve themselves from connivance with the camp boys who carry out the pilfering.

“What is happening in the port now, if all of us are not careful, it will drag dockworkers into problems. I am directing the dockworkers President to make sure that all the district and unit executives should stand and do their jobs as at when due. You dockworkers cannot tell me you don’t know yourselves.

“It is some of us that are conniving with those kelebe (camp boys) because you believe your salaries are not enough for you, that is why you bring an outsider to connive and steal in the port.

“I am giving a final warning to all the district and unit executives, anybody that is not a dock worker and you parade such person as a worker in the terminal, and they report you, you will be expelled from the port.

“They should not destroy this union because it has come to stay and they should not give us names that are not ours,” he warned.

It would be recalled that the port reform of 2006 restricted arbitrary movements in and out of the ports, bringing to an end indiscriminate pilfering of cargoes in the ports, otherwise called Wharf rats.

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