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NPA MD, Bello-Koko, port managers awarded for excellence in trade facilitation



In a landmark recognition of their contributions to trade facilitation and infrastructure improvement, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Mohammed Bello-Koko, alongside Sylvester Othuke Egede, and Charles Okaga, Port Managers of Tin Can Island and Lagos Ports Complex respectively, were honored with Excellence Awards during the fourth JournalNG Port Industry Town Hall meeting.

The awards specifically acknowledge their pivotal roles in resolving the longstanding congestion issues along the Apapa-Oshodi axis of the port access road.

According to the organizers, their efforts have transformed one of Nigeria’s most critical transit zones, marking a significant achievement in the nation’s logistics sector.

Ismail Aniemu, Publisher of JournalNG and organizer of the award, commended the trio for their relentless dedication and strategic leadership.

He emphasized their success in mobilizing support from various stakeholders, including government bodies and private sector entities, to tackle the complex challenges that had plagued the Apapa port traffic for over a decade.

“This recognition is a testament to their unprecedented commitment and selflessness in addressing one of the most persistent issues in Nigeria’s maritime industry,” Aniemu stated during the award ceremony.

The Apapa port area had been notorious for congestion caused by both logistical inefficiencies and criminal activities. Previous efforts by federal and Lagos State task forces had failed to yield sustainable solutions.

However, under the leadership of Bello-Koko, Egede, and Okaga, a comprehensive strategy was implemented, leveraging experience, intelligence, and collaborative partnerships to effectively clear the congested roads.

“The key to our success was not just in enforcement but in building consensus and cooperation among stakeholders,” remarked Mohammed Bello-Koko upon receiving the award.

“We understood that sustainable change required a multifaceted approach that addressed both logistical challenges and security concerns.”

Sylvester Othuke Egede, recognized for his role in managing Tin Can Island Port, highlighted the collaborative efforts that enabled the effective implementation of the ETO electronic call-up system. This system has significantly improved traffic flow by eliminating unauthorized truck parking and streamlining operations at the ports.

Charles Okaga, Port Manager of Lagos Ports Complex, emphasized the importance of continuous dialogue with stakeholders.

“By fostering a conducive environment for all parties involved – from truck operators to law enforcement agencies – we have managed to restore order and efficiency to our ports,” Okaga affirmed.

The awards serve as a testament to the pivotal role played by these individuals in enhancing Nigeria’s port infrastructure and facilitating smoother trade operations.

Their achievements are expected to have a lasting impact on the nation’s economic development, ensuring Nigeria remains competitive in the global logistics landscape.

As Nigeria continues to expand its maritime capabilities, the leadership exemplified by Mohammed Bello-Koko, Sylvester Othuke Egede, and Charles Okaga sets a precedent for effective governance and collaboration in the country’s port sector.

Their recognition underscores a renewed commitment to sustainable growth and efficiency in Nigeria’s vital trade corridors.