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Day 1: E-call up suffers delay, as truck transit park remains empty

The Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) electronic call-up system suffered delay on the very first day of takeoff as the Lillypond Truck Transit Park (TTP) that should serve as entry point for trucks going into the port remains empty, as construction is still ongoing at the TTP.
Our correspondent who monitored how the event unfolded on Saturday observed that despite the warnings by NPA and the Lagos State government for trucks to vacate the port premises, there was heavy presence of trucks from the Berger Cement area down to Tin Can Port Area of Apapa. Also at the old Mr. Biggs area of Creek Road, our correspondent witnessed heavy presence of trucks awaiting to go into the port, while one of the security heads attached to the premises refer to as Mr. Giwa addressed the truckers to get their trucks off the road informing that no truck would be allowed into the port except through the e-call up, the truck drivers were, however, adamant as they insist they have paid money earlier to security agents for them to get pass into the port.
Despite warnings to get their trucks off the road, some adamant truck drivers drove straight to the port gate as police officers shot into the air to disperse other truck drivers as LASTMA official brought in their towing vehicles to tow some trucks away. One of the drivers who spoke with Daily Sun on why they refused to get their trucks off the road, despite earlier warnings, said: “Yes, we heard about the call-up, but we can’t just turn back, because the security officials have collected money to pass us in to the port, some of us can’t just turn back like that.
“We have paid. This is my eight days on this road and I have not been allowed to go into the port despitethat my boss paid N200,000. We are not saying we won’t comply but they should allow us in, after all ,they have collected money from us so let them allow us in then. After , they can stop.”
Meanwhile our correspondent also observed that from the port gate down to the Ijora axis of Apapa, the road was void of trucks except for few tankers on the road.
At the Lillypond transit park, there was heavy presence of security, as the Director Maritime Services, Mr. Auwal Suleiman, of the Ministry of Transport, observed the level of preparedness of the transit park.

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The Director noted that there is need to fix the road that leads directly into the transit park because of heavy duty trucks as the soil may not be good enough to carry heavy duty trucks.
Speaking to Daily Sun, the Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Temidayo Adeboye, said the e- call up was delayed as a result of some trucks that are yet to vacate the some adjoining roads that lead to the port, even as he expressed optimistic that the e-call up will begin in few hours.
“With the introduction of the e-call up system, this place is not a truck park; it is a pre gate to enter the port. What that means is that any truck that enters here should spend between one to four hours, maximum and we usher it into the port. No truck is supposed to sleep here overnight.
“To start the e -call up system, they have to call off the manual call system. So there is a plan to cut off manual system from 12 midnight that everything from Area B should be allowed into the port and everything behind should go out.
“So when the port caters for all these traffic, we will now inject the e-call up system. We have not started the e-call up system because there are some roads that leads to the port that have not been cleared within the port and by the time we start the e-call up system, and trucks can’t pass so there is no point
“We are thinking of bringing in trucks here, so immediately things get to shape and the system starts, we can start to push, I was talking with GM now, he said in the next one hour when APMT can clear what they have, I can start pulling in trucks, so we are targeting that the first few trucks will start entering port about five to six, which is the plan.
“Some of the trucks are still obstructing places like Mr Biggs, Creek road area and somewhere near Eleganza. The call up will start today. In fact, we have even generated tickets for exports but APMT just called us and said the ticket we generated for export, they realized that they don’t have booking references. So we should go back and tell them that they should give us the list of their booking references to confirm so we don’t send a truck in with an intent that is not ready to go. So that is what stop us if not export should have entered by now, but today, you will see fishing trucks, a flat belt trucks and the rest will come in am just waiting for them to give me the order,” he said.

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