Buhari, Governor Ayade Discuss Proposed Bakassi Deep Seaport

ben-ayade-and-muhammadu-buhariThe Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, and Cross River State Governor Ben Ayade, on Tuesday met behind closed-doors to consider a blueprint of the Deep Seaport project initiated by the Governor’s administration.

At the meeting held in Abuja that lasted for about 40 minutes, both leaders discussed extensively, the proposed Bakassi Deep Seaport and the 260 kilometre superhighway signature projects of Professor Ayade, both estimated to cost about 700 billion Naira.

The Deep Seaport will boost the export of produce such as rice and banana as well as solid minerals, the Cross River government hopes.

According to Governor Ayade, “the Deep Seaport would not compete with existing Calabar Ports. It will only complement it because the Bakassi Port will be a 16-meter draft and will accommodate mother vessels especially from the far East”.

The governor had last year said the Deep Seaport ‎had received presidential nod  and support.

“Even in the face of several challenges and the fear that this project was impossible, the president has kept giving me proper encouragement and I am happy to acknowledged that,” the Governor told the Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority who met with him days ago.‎

The Federal Government recently gave the Cross River State Government the approval to recruit a transaction advisor for the project.

It had also constituted an advisory and implementation committee for the project

Sea Ports Efficiency: FG To Block All Revenue Leakages In Operations

Sea ports in Nigeria and revenue leakagesThe Nigerian government is making efforts to plug all revenue leakages in the operations of the nation’s ports, the Managing Director of the Nigeria Ports Authority, Hadiza Usman, said on Friday.

She made the remark during a tour of the ports in Port Harcourt and Onne in Rivers State, southern Nigeria.

According to the managing director, the era of operational lapses at the expense of revenue due to the government is over.

It was her first official visit to the sea port in Onne and she met with the members of the executives for an operational and assessment tour of the two sea ports.

In a separate meeting with members of the executives at Onne Port, the manager of the port, Mr Alhassan Abubakar, rolled out the challenges faced by personnel especially in the area of welfare.

Ms Hadiza Usman assured them that welfare of staff was a priority for her administration.

She told Channels Television that steps had been taken to ensure all revenue leakages were blocked and duly paid to the consolidated revenue account.

“One of the things we are doing in Onne Port is to ensure that all revenue due to the Federal Government is duly paid. We have developed a payment system that will guard against leakages,” she explained.

The General Manager of eastern ports of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Abdullahi Goje, hinted that the port was sitting on a land area of over 2,539 hectares and still expanding and was home of the nation’s oil and gas free zone, regarded as the fastest growing in Sub-Saharan Africa, with over 200 companies operating within the port.

At the end of the tour, the Managing Director of the Nigeria Ports Authority addressed journalists on the need to review the lease and concession agreements with operators to ensure the area is put to maximum use for the benefit of business and the economy.