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Published On: Sat, May 20th, 2017

Osinbajo Bans Touting, Directs 24/7 Administration In Ports

Acting President Yemi Osinbajo

Acting President Yemi Osinbajo


LAGOS MAY 20TH (URHOBOTODAY)-Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, bans touting in Nigeria ports and directed that the Apapa Ports should run 24/7. He also directed that all valid ordinary tourist and business visa applications by foreigners be processed within 48 hours.
It would be recall that Osinbajo had on Thursday signed three Executive Orders dealing with the business environment, local content in public procurement and timely budget submission. The Orders take effect immediately.
Osinbajo in the Order declared that, “the Apapa Port shall resume 24-hour operations within 30 days of the issuance of this Order and there shall be no touting whatsoever by official or unofficial persons at any port in Nigeria.”
According to the directive on port operations, “on duty staff shall be properly identified by uniform and official cards while off duty staff shall stay away from the ports except with the express approval of the agency head. The FAAN Aviation Security (AVSEC) and Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) Security shall enforce this order.”
He added that “all non-official staff shall be removed from the secured areas of airports. No official of FAAN, Immigration, security agency or Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) or any other agency is to meet any non-designated dignitary at any secure areas of the airport.”
In addition, the Acting President, through the Executive Order, has directed each Port in Nigeria to assign an existing export terminal to be dedicated to the exportation of agriculture produce within 30 days of the issuance Order.
On visa applications, Osinbajo in the directive issued to all MDAs as part the overall initiative by the Federal Government under the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC); to ensure ease of doing business in the country.
According to the Order, entry visas to Nigeria ‘shall henceforth be issued or rejected with reason by the Consular Office of Nigerian Embassies and High Commissions within 48 hours of receipt of valid applications.
The Order also states that the Embassies and High Commissions must ensure that they publish notice on timeline at every Consular Office and on every website of Nigerian Embassies and High Commissions and develop a comprehensive and up-to-date lists of requirements, conditions and procedure for obtaining visa on arrival, including estimated time frame and; publish same on immigration-related websites in Nigeria and abroad, including Embassies and High Commissions, and all ports of entry into Nigeria.
The Acting President also directed Federal Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to harmonise processing of applications in the business environment, in order to promote ease of doing business in the country
This means that when anyone in Nigeria has an application before a Federal Government agency seeking approval, permit or licence, the agency to which he or she is applying will be responsible for obtaining all further official request for information by any other government agency putting an end to a situation whereby such applicant would be personally running around seeking additional information needed for the consideration of his application by another agency.
In the Executive Order, an MDA that requires input documentation, requirements or conditions from another MDA in order to deliver products and services on applications within the originating MDA’s remit or mandate shall only request a photocopy of submitted application or any other proof that would speed up the processing of such application.
It further stipulates that it shall be the responsibility of the originating MDA to seek verification or certification directly from the issuing MDA.
The directive on default approvals stipulates that “where the relevant agency or official fails to communicate approval or rejection of an application within the time stipulated in the published list, all applications for business registrations, certification, waivers, licenses or permits not concluded within the stipulated timeline shall be deemed approved and granted.”
Also to boost the transparency drive of the Buhari presidency, the Order stipulates that, where applications are rejected within the stipulated timeline, all rejections shall be given with reasons.
Specifically, the Order stipulates that “failure of the appropriate officer to act on any application within the timeline stipulated, without lawful excuse, shall amount to misconduct and be subject to appropriate disciplinary proceedings in accordance with the law and regulations applicable to the civil or public service.”

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