President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the audit of the maritime sector to ascertain why it is not making the desired progress, a statement issued by the Ministry of Transportation on Thursday said.
The statement was signed by the Director of Press and Public Affairs of the Ministry, Yetunde Sonaike.
It said the Minister, Rotimi Amaechi, made this known when a delegation of the Technical Unit on Governance and Anti-Corruption Reforms (TUGAR), paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Abuja.
Mr. Amaechi said the purpose of the audit was to ascertain why the nation’s seaports were not making progress in terms of timely clearance of goods, when compared with those of neighbouring countries.
The minister said corruption at the ports were endemic and urged agencies directly involved in the process of inspection and clearance of goods to evolve ways of curbing corruption.
The minister expressed concern over the frequency of diversion of vessels to neighbouring countries due to bottlenecks at the nation’s ports.
Meanwhile, the statement noted that Mr. Buhari had also approved a `National Single Window’ designed to ease clearance as well as tackle corruption at the seaports.
It explained that the National Single Window is an automated system which allows for instant screening and scanning of vessels which would facilitate the clearance of goods 24 hours.