Maritime agency resolves dockworkers payment

 David Adekunle, Lagos

NIMASA boss, Dr. Dakuku Peterside addressing the protesting dockworkers from ENL Terminal

Disengaged dockworkers at the ENL Terminal will now feel a sigh of relief as their terminal benefits would be paid in line with the contents of the current bargaining agreements contained in the National Joint Industrial Council (NJIC) document.

This follows the intervention of the Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside when the dockworkers staged a protest at the agency recently.

Resolved through dialogue
Dr. Peterside had promised the protesting dockworkers that the agency will engage all interested parties in dialogue with a view to resolving contentious issues within seven days.

A series of meeting were then held at the agency involving representatives of the dockworkers, Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN), ENL and the Nigeria Police where it was finally resolved that all disengaged dockworkers should be paid the sum of N350,000 as earlier offered by ENL.

The NIMASA boss also assured all stakeholders that the agency is responsible for the regulation of maritime labour in Nigeria.

According to him, “NIMASA will always ensure fair and just treatment of Seafarers and Dockworkers in line with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Decent Work Agenda and the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC 2006).”

The Director General, therefore charged employers of maritime labour and the workers to continue to be law abiding and always engage in dialogue as an alternative dispute resolution link.

This is the first time in the history of the maritime sector in Nigeria that casual dockworkers would be paid terminal benefits.