The introduction of e-payment by the Nigeria Port Authority (NPA) may have attracted a commendation from the Minister of Transport, Senator Idris Umar.
The Minister, who said he was glad that the authority, by the gesture would reduce the amount of time that trading ships spend in Nigerian ports in addition to raising the revenue profile of government, made the observation after a briefing session by the NPA Managing Director, Mallam Habib Abdullahi.
“I am impressed with the deployment of this e-payment solution which will reduce the turn-around-time of vessels and improve overall efficiencies at the Ports. This is indeed a great feat, a great achievement”, he observed, describing the avant-garde initiative in providing an e-payment platform as noteworthy.
Senator Idris Umar was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr Nebolisa Emordi and other Directors of the Ministry.
On plans by the Federal Government to improve maritime operations in Nigeria, the Minister hinted that the Lekki Seaport operations would kick off in 2015, adding that work was also on-going on development of other deep sea ports in Badagry, Olokola and Ibaka in Lagos, Ogun, Ondo and Akwa Ibom States respectively, and gave assurances that the development of these sea ports would bring massive development to Nigeria’s Maritime Industry.
Earlier, while briefing the Minister, Mallam Abdullahi had explained that the e-payment platform would positively impact on the Authority’s revenue, enhance transparency and reduce vessel waiting time.
The Executive Director (Finance & Administration), Mr Olumide Oduntan, further explained that the Authority’s initiative was premised on the need to improve overall Port efficiencies, noting that prior to the deployment of the e-platform solution, payment confirmation took between 3 to 5 days as opposed to a few minutes currently experienced.
The efficiency of the e-platform was further confirmed as payments by two customers were received during the live presentation of the solution to the Honourable Minister.
The Minister inspected the Computer Gallery of the Authority and the ICT Help-Desk recently commissioned in all Port locations nationwide, before leaving Lagos.
SOURCE: INTERNATIONAL TRADE MONITOR