Nigerian dockworkers Condemn APMT For Poor Remuneration
Nigerian dockworkers operating at the nation seaports under the aegis of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) have passed a verdict on the biggest terminal operator in Nigeria; AP Moller Terminal (APMT) saying that the concessionaire has not lived up to expectation in terms of remuneration and other welfare packages for dockworkers working for them.
President of the dockworkers branch of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju gave this verdict in Lagos on Tuesday.
Adeyanju hinged the bad treatment of the union by APMT on the frequent changes in the management of the terminal.
He said that even though the terminal has done well in terms of safety and security within the terminal, they have failed to take proper care of their workers who according to him are the ones responsible for the success of the terminal.
“In terms of welfares they are very poor and I must say this, it will take you two weeks before you will get anything from APMT management, this is because they change their management every two years”
The union leader however commended the indigenous terminal operators at the port and even charged Nigerians and maritime stakeholders to give totality of their support to indigenous terminal operators because their success and growth will affect Nigerians better than how it is under the multinationals.
“We Nigerians must support the indigenous terminal operators and that is what we are doing, the union is supporting them because if they grow the union and the workers under them will also grow”
He appealed to the management of the APMT to improve upon the welfare of its dockworkers saying that without the dockworkers the terminal would not have recorded its present business gains.
“I want to use this medium to appeal to them that they should have the love of the workers in their heart, it is very important, they are the engine room of the job, they are part of the stakeholders, they are the ones growing the wealth for them so they should have the love of the workers in their heart”
Adeyanju also lamented that the recent changes in the executive directors of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has affected the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) money that is supposed to be paid to the dockworkers.
According told our correspondent that the money was deducted from dockworker’s salary in 2002 under the stevedoring contractors.
Adeyanju said that contrary to widely held opinions, the NSITF money is not with the union but ithat is is still hanging in the files of NIMASA, “their money is not with the union because that is the thinking of the average dockworkers, we are not holding their money, the money is still with NIMASA hanging in their files, but I am assuring you that before the end of the month it will be paid, this is assurance from NIMASA”
“The money does not cover all dockworkers in the port, it is only for those that their employer deducted from them, but because of widespread news, the anxiety is there and everybody is putting hope on the money, I as a president I worked with Kebbi motors back then and my money is N9,000 to be paid by NIMASA but up till now it has not been paid” he explained