In what many would term a heavy blow, the Federal Government has instructed the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to terminate a pilotage agreement with Intel Nigeria Limited.

MD of the NPA, Ms hadiza Bala-Usman was instructed to terminate the agreement in a letter written by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF)  Abubakar Malami (SAN) dated September 27 2017.

What was the agreement about ?

Intel had before now provided piloting services to ships coming into Nigerian ports, with a length greater than 35 metres have to be piloted or guided to the nation’s ports.  Intel collected a fee for this on behalf of the NA and took 28% of the revenue as commission.

Why is the agreement being terminated ?

According to the AGF, the terms of the agreement which was signed 17 years ago was illegal  violated Sections 80(1) and 162(1) and (10) of the constitution.  Section 80(1) and 162 (1) says the all revenues earned by the Federation shall be paid into the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

The agreement also violates the Treasury Single Account (TSA) policy of the federal government. The Treasury Single Account (TSA) was introduced by the Goodluck Jonathan administration, but implemented by the Buhari administration in November 2015. Under the TSA, all revenues earned by federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are paid into one account.

Implications of the termination

The termination, will lead to a major cut in revenue for the firm. President Muhmmadu Buhari had recently ordered a policy review which allowed non oil exports to be received at the Onne terminal. Intel had prior to this, being the dominant operator there.

Integrated Logistics Services Nigeria Limited (Intel) was founded by Gabriel Volpi in  1982. The company is into shipping and logistics services in several ports in the country, and oil companies. Gabriel Volpi, is currently enmeshed in a tussle with Oando Plc over alleged mismanagement of the firm, and a lack of representation on the company’s board. Ex Vice President Atiku Abubakar is believed to have aa major stake in the firm.

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