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Shippers’ Council donates goods to Kano Paediatric Hospital



The Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC) on Wednesday donated Single Motor Hospital Beds and other goods to Asiya Bayero Paediatric Hospital in Kano.

The Executive Secretary of the NSC, Mr Hassan Bello, said the gesture was necessary in order to make touch the lives of children, especially at the grassroots.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the items included Micro Air Alternating pressure overly mattreses, Washing machines, pressing irons and generator.

Bello, represented by the Council’s Director in charge of North West, Hajiya Karimatu Usman, added that the gesture was also part of the organisation’s corporate social responsibility to its immediate communities.

According to him, such responsibility is always targeted at the grassroots with a view to touching lives at the base of the society.

He commended the efforts of the hospital management towards ensuring that children are given serious and proper attention.

The Director General, Kano State Hospitals Management Board, Dr Nasir Alasan-Kabo, represented by the board’s Director of Admin and General Services Alhaji Bashir Ado commended the NSC and assured them of judicious use of the goods.

Also in her remarks, the Zonal Medical Director of the hospital, Hajiya Binta Jibril said the donation came at the right time because two of their washing machines were no longer working.

According to her, the hospital accommodates 20 to 30 patients at a time, adding that the patients are of the ages of two to 16 year. (NAN)


Edited by Ismail Abdulaziz

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Eid- el-fitr: Imam bars worshippers without face masks from Mosque in Nasarawa



Imam Khalud Ibrahim,  of JIWIS Central Mosque,  Gudi in Akwanga Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, on Sunday sent out worshippers without face masks from the Mosque during prayers to celebrate the Eid-el-fitr.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Nasarawa state government had on May 19, lifted ban on religious gathering for two weeks with conditions that worshipers must use of face mask and maintain physical distancing at worship centres.

The governent also directed religious leaders to provide water for hand washing as well as hand sanitiser in order contain further spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Gov. Abdullahi Sule was among worshippers, who observed prayers at the Gudi Central Mosque.

The Imam explained that his decision to send out and bar those without face masks from the Mosque was in compliance with the government directives to contain COVID-19.

He urged Muslims to always be obedient to God and leaders at all levels for the overall peace and development of the country.

Ibrahim attributed the ills in the society to disobedience and urged the people to seek God’s intervention for remedy.

“God will answer our prayers over the killings and other vices in the country if we collectively turn to Him for solution,” the Imam said.

Edited By: Johnson Eyiangho and Isaac Ukpoju (NAN)

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Muslim worshippers attend Laylat al-Qadr night prayer in Old City of Jerusalem




Muslim worshippers attend a Laylat al-Qadr night prayer during their holy fasting month of Ramadan outside the the compound known as al-Haram al-Sharif amid the COVID-19 pandemic in the Old City of Jerusalem, May 19, 2020. (Photo by Muammar Awad/Xinhua)

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Afghan mosque attack kills 8 worshippers breaking fast – officials



Gunmen opened fire in a mosque in central Afghanistan on Tuesday evening, killing eight worshippers, who are breaking their Ramadan fast, wounding five others, officials said.

“Unknown gunmen fired on people praying inside a mosque during iftar (referring to the meal eaten to break daytime fasting) time,’’ said Wahida Shahkar, spokeswoman for the Governor of Parwan province, during the Islamic holy month.

The Ministry of Interior confirmed the attack in Parwan’s provincial capital Charekar, blaming it on the insurgent Taliban.

The Taliban denied responsibility and said Afghan security forces were to blame.

The United Nations has warned of an alarming uptick in violence against civilians in Afghanistan.

A shocking attack on a Kabul maternity ward last week killed 24 people, including newborn babies.

Violence increased around the country even after a Feb. 29 U.S.-Taliban pact on the withdrawal of U.S.-led foreign forces in exchange for Taliban security guarantees.

Afghan security forces, on Tuesday, clashed with Taliban fighters around the city of Kunduz, a strategically important centre that has been one of the Taliban’s main targets and which the group has briefly captured twice in recent years.

Security forces largely repelled the Taliban offensive with the help of air support.

Assadullah Khalid, acting Minister of Defence, said during a visit to the city that more than 50 insurgents and eight security force members had been killed.

The Taliban have rejected repeated calls for a ceasefire by the Afghan government.

They deny any involvement in the maternity ward attack and the U.S. believes the Islamic State was responsible.

The U.S. has sent special envoy, Zalmay Khalilzad, to Doha and Kabul to press the Afghan government and the Taliban to start stalled peace talks.

Khalilzad has said he will push for a reduction in violence during the trip.


Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Shippers’ Council conducts COVID-19 sensitisation for maritime community



Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) has rounded up the first phase of its COVID-19 sensitisation for the maritime community.

Mrs Rakiya Zubairu, Head, Public Relations, NSC said this in a statement on Sunday in Lagos.

According to her, the 3-day programme, which started on May 13, kicked off at the headquarters of the council with the Executive Secretary, Mr Hassan Bello, presenting hand gloves, sanitisers and masks to the leaders of seven trucking associations.

Zubairu said that he was joined by the Council’s Directors of Regulatory Services and Consumer Affairs, Ms Ifeoma Ezedinma and Chief Cajetan Agu respectively.

“The sensitisation programme moved to the terminals and shipping companies where the NCDC hygienist, Moji Ayorinde under the direction of Dr Everistus Aniaku, head of Emergency Operations and National Response Team on COVID-19 in Lagos State, gave talks on how to protect oneself from contracting COVID-19.

“She demonstrated the correct method to wear a mask, hand washing, hand sanitisation and physical distancing among others.

“The attentive audiences at the various locations engaged the NCDC team with questions as well as seeking clarifications.

“Over 100 stakeholders attended this first phase of the programme. Participants were made up of freight forwarders and staff of the shipping companies and terminals.

“Participants are expected to cascade the lessons as the dictates of physical distancing could not allow for all stakeholders within the different terminals and shipping companies to attend the sessions.

“Participants received masks and sanitisers courtesy of Nigerian Shippers’ Council,” she said.

Bello, at the occasion, said NSC considered it part of its responsibility to ensure the safety of truckers as they are silent facilitators of Nigeria’s economy.

He commended them for their cooperation in acceding to NSC’s request to reduce their fees during the period of the lockdown.

Bello reminded them that they are primarily responsible for their own well-being and urged them to do everything to stay safe as their families and the nation needed them.

Responding on behalf of the trucking associations, Mr Stephen Okafor, Coordinator of Committee of Maritime Truck Unions and Associations, COMTUA, commended Bello, describing him as a partner in progress.

Okafor assured him of their cooperation in resetting Nigeria’s postCOVID-19 economy.

Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)


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Shippers’ Council, NCDC partner on COVID-19 sensitisation



The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) has collaborated with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to contain the spread of COVID-19, particularly in the maritime community.

Mrs Rakiya Zubairu, Head, Public Relations, NSC, disclosed this in a statement in Lagos on Wednesday.

According to her, starting from Wednesday, the council will hand over hundreds of face masks and hand sanitisers to the leaders of seven trucking associations.

“This is particularly significant because truckers, being essential workers, are some of the few people who are allowed to move across state lines as they deliver essential cargoes all around the country.

“It may be recalled that NSC, through the Federal Ministry of Transportation, had made an intervention for this category of persons (truckers).

“To be allowed free movement as they convey goods from the ports to the length and breadth of Nigeria and indeed beyond the borders of the country.

“Also, starting today, NSC will be making the rounds of terminals and shipping companies on a COVID-19 sensitisation campaign,” she said.

Zubairu said that NCDC had assigned one if its doctors to deliver a talk on COVID-19 at the various locations where freight forwarders and staff of these organisations would be present.

She noted that the Port Health Services Department of the Federal Ministry of Health would also be present at the sensitisation events.

“Shippers’ Council, as the promoter of this sensitisation campaign, will give out face masks and sanitisers to all present at all the terminals and shipping companies,” she said.

Edited By: Buhari Bolaji/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)


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Shippers’ Council commends shipping companies for suspending demurrage



The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) has commended shipping companies for their cooperation in complying with the suspension of demurrage on cargo that landed at terminals between March 30 and May 3.

The NSC made the commendation in a statement signed by its Head of Public Relations, Mrs Rakiya Zubairu and made available to newsmen in Lagos on Friday.

According to her, it is a testament to their goodwill toward Nigeria and its economy.

Zubairu, however, noted that the management of the council was aware that some freight forwarders and shippers had difficulties with the issue of refund of demurrage charges to those that had already paid.

“Such persons are encouraged to contact the council through the helplines and e-mail addresses published on the NSC’s website ( and other social media handles,’’ she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that on April 17, NSC directed shipping companies to suspend demurrage charges during the period of the COVID-19 lockdown.

The suspension strictly applies to cargo discharged at the terminals between March 30 and May 3.

This would serve as an incentive for owners of cargo to help accelerate the process of taking delivery of their cargo.

Edited By: Edith Bolokor/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)


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COVID-19: Shippers council tasks haulage operators on reduced freight rates at seaports



Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC) has urged haulage operators to reduce the freight rates to decongest the nation’s seaports amid COVID-19 pandemic.

The Executive Secretary, Mr Hassan Bello made the appeal at a meeting with truck owners under the aegis of Council of Maritime Truck Union and Association (COMTUA), held on Tuesday.

Bello, according to a statement on Wednesday, said truck owners must sacrifice and contribute to the sustainability of the nation’s economy during the crisis.

He said that that the nation did not need astronomical or unrealistic freight rates, as the ports needed to be decongested.

“We are here to discuss  the issue of cost, NSC has tried to bring out indicative freight rate for guidance and we are not directing you to obey, but what we are doing is obtainable anywhere in the world.

“We cannot continue to have price differentials at whims and caprices of the owners; there must be some guidelines on freight rate just like we are doing with shipping companies, terminal operators and consolidators.

“Everyone must have a price regime and we are not fixing the price, we will leave that to demand and supply, but there must be some limit because Shippers abroad, everyday, make enquiries but we are at loss because of no standard indicative rate.

“We want you to help us to have a standard rate so that there will be competition,” he said.

Bello said that the council would further engage the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) on reduction of their charges.

He urged them not to allow Nigeria’s economy to be at standstill, appealing to them to be patriotic, keep people in employment and operate at the port to help clear the cargoes.

Bello noted that since the council and NPA had  both secured storage and rent-free period for importers, the haulage operators should also ensure movement of the cargoes out of the port.

“We cannot overemphasise the importance  of haulers to the economy, especially now that we are having to face this pandemic. What we want is for the hauler to ensure port operation is done.

“NSC has secured demurrage-free period during the lockdown and NPA has also secured 21 days free rent period from the terminal and this combination has given us relief and advantage to take as much cargoes out of the port.

“There is limitation in trucks and that is why we are appealing to you to help us find solution,  because the rate of occupancy is getting to 90 per cent, that there is no space for cargoes at the terminal anymore, and this is because trucks are not coming to evacuate cargoes.

“Let us use this opportunity, rent and demurrage-free period and also the free road to deploy trucks to the port,” he said.

The General Coordinator, Council of Maritime Truck Unions and Association (COMTUA) Mr Stephen Okafor,  agreed that the truck owners would lower the price to meet present realities.

He, however, urged the council to call an expanded meeting after the COVID-19 pandemic to draw up uniform freight rates for all truck owners.

“On pricing, we have earlier called for freight rate standardisation but was not enforced, and we have so many unions in the industry.

“We are not against coming down on the pricing and I agree that will be part of our own contribution,” Okafor said.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)

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COVID-19: Shippers’ Council suspends demurrage charges



The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) on Friday directed shipping companies to suspend demurrage charges during the period of COVID-19 lockdown.

The Executive Secretary of the NSC, Mr Hassan Bello, made the announcement in a statement in Lagos.

According to him, the suspension applies to cargo that is discharged at the terminals from March 30.

“In line with the presidential directive that port operations are essential services, NSC has been monitoring activities to ensure that seaports run efficiently and smoothly within the present circumstances.

“It also ensures that the port runs in compliance with the existing health and safety guidelines for the prevention and containment of the spread of COVID-19.

“During the daily monitoring exercise, it was observed that some shippers, through no fault of theirs, are unable to take delivery of their cargo because of lack of public transportation, inadequate banking services and limited service providers, due to reduced workforce, etc.

“Based on the forgoing, NSC has directed shipping companies to suspend demurrage charges during the period of the COVID-19 lockdown which is with effect from March 30.”

The executive secretary added that demurrage charges during this period should be refunded to the consignee or his authorised agent.

Bello pointed out that the suspension of demurrage during this period was an incentive for owners of cargo to accelerate the process of taking delivery of their cargo.

“This suspension of demurrage charges is not an excuse to delay or abandon cargo at the ports.

“Erring shippers will be sanctioned in addition to having to pay the demurrage, due on their cargo,” he said.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Silas Nwoha (NAN)


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Shippers Council says ports to operate during Easter holidays



The Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC) on Wednesday disclosed that the ports would be opened during the public holidays and weekend from Good Friday April 10 through Easter Monday April 13.

The Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of NSC, Mr Hassan Bello, said in Lagos that the Nigeria Customs Service and the terminals would operate during this period.

Bello urged Freight Forwarders, logistics providers and shippers to take advantage of this opportunity to take delivery of their cargos out of ports.

“More importantly, Freight Forwarders are advised to use tomorrow April 9 which is the last working day to perfect all documentation processes, including shipping company release (DO) and (TDO) from the terminals.

“Freight Forwarders should be guided accordingly as only those who are at the point of taking delivery of their goods are expected to be at the ports,” he said.

Bello said that further to the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari in his nationwide address of March 29, in which he said that the ports/terminals remain operational, a visit was paid to Five-Star Logistics (FSL).

He said that Nigeria, like other countries, cannot afford to close down ports; this was to allow cargo flow, particularly pharmaceutical products, industrial raw materials and hospital equipment among others.

He commended the terminals for the compliance measures put in place to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

He noted the provision of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the use of everyone on the premises as the terminal remained operational during the lockdown.

He said the council was working tirelessly to ensure that port operations and seamless movement of cargo delivery was achieved.

The FSL Management represented by the General Manager, Mr Wolfgang Schneider, informed the Shippers’ Council management that only essential staff came to work.

He said that the terminal had over 5000-6000 vehicles ready for delivery during the Easter Public holidays and highlighted various challenges, most important of which, he noted, was the limited space for storage.

He also appealed to NSC to intervene in the matter of barge operations by ensuring that they continue.

Edited By: Ifeyinwa Okonkwo/Peter Ejiofor)

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