The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, on Tuesday reinstated the Federal Government’s commitment to resolve the gridlock witnessed on Apapa road, which he said “would soon be a thing of the past”.
Amaechi said this while receiving members of the Governing Board, Nigerian Shippers’ Council led by the Chairman, Hon. Mai Mala Buni in Abuja.
He said that the problem, which had persisted over the years was due to the country’s port located at Apapa, which was best described as a River Port.
According to him, the port neither has the depth nor the capacity to berth large ships.
He said that Federal Government had plans to build Deep Seaports at Bonny in Rivers State, Warri in Delta State and Lekki in Lagos State.
He said: “The approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to build Deep Seaports at Bonny and Warri, importers from Aba, Onitsha or Port Harcourt will no longer have business importing cargoe through Apapa Port.
“Thereby saving man-hours wasted in trying to clear goods and transport to its final destination.”
The minister, however, called on all agencies and stakeholders involved in port operations to deliver on their responsibilities to solve the problems at the ports.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the Governing Board, Hon. Mai Mala Buni, commended the minister for the support given to the board.
He said that the board would formulate policies that would not only help NSC to fulfill its statutory role but diversify the economy, create employment and uplift the standard of living of the people.
Buni appealed to the minister to assist the board earn the strong political support required to have unfettered access to the ports and other establishments to carry out its statutory functions.