The Africa Association of Professional Freight Forwarders and Logistics of Nigeria (APFFLON) said on Thursday that aviation ground handling companies consulted stakeholders before the recent increase in handling rates.
Mr Frank Ogunojemite, the National President APFFLON, said this while addressing newsmen in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) at airports, had last week embarked on a protest against 100 per cent hike in cargo charges by two handling companies.
The ground handling companies are Nigerian Aviation Handling Company plc (NAHCO) and Skyway Aviation Handling Company Plc (SAHCO).
Ogunojemite, however, said that those kicking against the new tariff regime were being hypocritical.
He said the increment in the tariff was because the companies had to adjust to the harsh economy of the country.
“Again, we are all aware of the setback and havoc wreaked on International businesses by Covid-19, and cargo handling companies were not excluded.
“Today, prices of passenger tickets across airlines have increased to over 300 percent, yet nobody or group is coming out to protest against the development.
“The continued plunging of naira against the dollar and other world currencies is causing serious inflation which is adversely affecting businesses as well.
“Price comparison with other African countries as regards cargo handling charges shows it is almost at par or a bit higher than that of our indigenous companies,” he said.
Ogunojemite recalled that in 2019, APFFLON went to court seeking to stop the same increment due to the insufficient reason behind it at that time.
He said it was disturbing that ANLCA leadership was not standing up against multiple taxation on imported vehicles in the country.
“Our sister associations are being insensitive to the plights of the cargo handlers as well, because on one or two occasions, some of the staff of one of the companies went on strike over poor working condition.
“This was a clear indication that the harsh government policies and galloping inflation also affect them as they affect individuals and private enterprises ,” he added.
Ogunojemite assured the aviation community that their members would continue to render services to clients as professionals and law abiding citizens.