The ongoing #ENDSARS protests have taken a huge toll on the nation’s seaports as all business activities are currently on lockdown following the 24 hours curfew imposed by the Lagos State and other State Governments across the country.
The two busiest seaports in Lagos, Apapa and Tin Can Island are deserted as both roads leading to the ports are closed while Warri Port is also under siege with gates now locked and all business activities paralysed.
However, the ENDSARS protests have also compounded the already border closure challenges with roads leading to Idiroko and Benin borders all blocked by youths. These have made movement difficult for commercial buses and people doing business around the border corridors.
Speaking with Daily Sun, the National Coordinator, Save Nigeria Freight Forwarders, Osita Chukwu, said that the nation’s seaports are deserted and no business activities are going as nobody wants to die.
He added: “Who wants to die where everywhere is blocked. I was told Tin Can Island port roads are blocked. Even Customs are not allowed to come to work to perform their daily duties.
It is a serious situation we find ourselves. I could not go out for the past two days or do anything.” He said now youths want to be damaging and looting properties because they are angry.
He urged Federal Government to look for a way to meet their demands and listen to them warning that if Government refuses to listen and meet up with their demands, the implication on the economy will be huge even more than the Ebola and the COVID-19.
Meanwhile, an importer, Mr Andrew Obasi, said right now the ever busy ports are deserted because people are not coming to work adding that vessels are on the anchorage area waiting to berth and discharge their cargoes.
According to him, the sector has lost hundreds of billions of naira in the last few days the #ENDSARS protests had lasted across the nation, adding that the loss is huge in terms of man hours, demurrage that would be paid on delayed berthing and discharge of vessels.
He added that as a result of the protests, importers are incurring other avoidable charges on import and export consignments, which could not be handled as soon as they arrived the ports.