The Founder, National Association of Approved freight Forwarders, Dr. Boniface Aniebonam, has called on the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, to explore creative, innovative and digital thinking in shaping transportation policies and actions.

Aniebonam said this during the 25th Convocation, Matriculation and 35th Year Anniversary at the Institute of Transport and Management Technology held recently in Badagry, Lagos

The event tagged ‘Transport Sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product in Nigeria: Problems and Prospect’ had in attendance over hundred graduates from different academic programmes.

He said that paradigm shift in innovative solutions to transportation problems and the need for increased contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Nigeria is imperative.

“Integrated and coordinated multi-modal transportation are keys for sustainable transportation. Seamless inter-modality is a key vision for transportation mobility. Translating this vision into reality require standardized systems, coordinated and integrated different modes”, he said.

He asserted that for transport to contribute more to the country’s GDP, genuine policy commitment, tremendous and sustained effort will have to be invested in this sector.

“Training and retraining of operators, compliance to vehicle weight limitations, operators’ managerial, technical and economic capacity should be improved”, he said.

He also stressed that integrated approach to transport development policy should be adopted, taking all transport modes into consideration.

Aniebonam posited further that the financing of transport infrastructure should be promoted with emphasis on innovative approach. Greater safety and security should be provided in all transport modes. Human institutional capacities should be strengthened and training institution rehabilitated

“Government should consolidate the present attention reforms being given to the transport sector in view of its multiplier effect on the nations’ economic growth and development”, he said.

Earlier in his speech, the Former Director General of the Nigeria Maritime Authority, Mr. John Patrick Egesi said that lack of manufacturing based has greatly affected the growth of our maritime, rail and road industry, adding that one had only to show how busy our rail, road, short-sea and high sea transport will be if things were improved.

Egesi noted that what our country would have earned have been badly affected through the importation-substitution industry policies of various Nigeria governments that raises tariff or banned goods which eventually diverted to neigbouring port who earn the port duties that would have accrued to Nigerian port while the goods still find their way into the country with the connivance of official of government who enrich themselves in the process.

The Rector of the institute, Dr. Lilian Chibor, in her opening address said that the uniqueness of the convocation lies in the fact that the institute is celebrating its 35th year anniversary. “Thirty five years is no joke and this depicts that we are now matured and looking back we have achieved a lot having churned out over ten thousand graduates and we are still counting”.

She added that in Nigeria, there are a lot of factors that contribute to gross domestic product, but without gainsaying Transport sector has contributed immensely though the government has not given it the right attention in terms of bad roads and the government is not using modern techniques.

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