Operator condemns calls by truck owners for parking space
A maritime operator, Prince Aderemi Olikuntuyi has condemned calls by truck owners at the nation’s seaports that the federal government should provide parking spaces for them, describing it as an aberration.
Speaking during an interaction with maritime journalists in Apapa recently, Olikuntuyi, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of ADLAD Group of Companies, urged the Federal and State Governments to jettison such demands by the truck owners including Association of Maritime Truck Owners (AMARTO) and National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) for government to provide parking spaces for truck owners.
He challenged the maritime truck owners to ensure that they acquire a parking space for the trucks before going into the business and that they should stop constituting a nuisance at the ports. He said, ‘‘the government today does not pay for the office where I am using, why should truck owners be demanding parking space from government? Before going into the business, you must have understood the environment and procure a parking space for your truck. You intend to make money from it, so why should they be blaming government?’’
Similarly, he has also condemned the continuous collection of Wharf Landing Fees by the Apapa Local Government on roads leading into the port, saying that the money is not being utilized for the purpose it was meant for. He claimed to be the originator of the Wharf Landing Fee idea which he said was purportedly introduced to the former Chairman of Apapa Local Government, Senator Muniru Muse by him. He argued that the collectors of the money have derailed from the original concept of the Wharf Landing Fees.
According to him, the Lagos State Government has failed to use part of the proceeds from Wharf Landing Fees to fix the dilapidated portions of the access roads leading to the port where the money is being generated. According to him, the money which ran into trillions of Naira is currently going into the pockets of very few corrupt individuals.
He claimed that the Wharf Landing Fees concept was copied from Gatwick Authorities in the United Kingdom where the magnitude of trailers coming to the area deprives the citizens of social life. ‘‘The money was supposed to be applied on the bad state of the roads as we are seeing it today. The wharf landing fee would also have been a succor for the communities that are closer to the port because the presence of the traffic to the port would have deprived them of so many things, including social life,’’ he said.