By Patience Danjuma
Nigeria’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved the purchase of two pilot cutters at the cost of N1.2 billion, for use at the Lagos Port Complex Apapa and the Tin Can Island Port Complex, both in Lagos.
A pilot cutter is typically a small or medium-sized boat used to transport maritime pilots from the harbour to incoming large trading vessels.
The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, while briefing newsmen after the FEC meeting in Abuja on Wednesday, said his Ministry went to the meeting with two memoranda.
“We have what we refer to as pilot cutters; these are vessels that convey pilots, who move ships or vessels form point A to point B and currently we have pilot cutters everywhere, excluding Tin Can and Apapa, which constitute the Western Ports.
“So, we came to cabinet to request that they award the contract to enable us purchase the two pilot cutters to serve both Tincan and Apapa.
“That was approved; it was awarded at N1,210,385,255. 37.
“The Ministry of Transportation had two memoranda approved at the meeting. One of them had to do with the variation of cost for the Abuja runway, which came earlier in April but was stepped down for the ministry to liaise in terms of pricing with the Ministry of Works.
“That was done and brought back to cabinet. The work was reviewed and the cabinet approved the increase of N628,123,590 as variation on the job.
“Actually what we refer to as variation is an additional work that we ran into in the cause of the construction or repair of the runway,” he said.