Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Malam Habib Abdullahi has stressed the need for a review of the concession agreement after over five years of operation so as to mutually and constructively come out with suggestions and practical solutions that will improve the system.
Abdullahi made this call in Lagos yesterday while receiving members of the Senate Committee on Privatisation who visited his office.
He said that with port concession, the role of NPA in the maritime industry has changed from that of an operator to a landlord and technical regulator.
He told his guests that the NPA was fully committed to its roles of providing common user facilities at the ports in the area of access roads, quay wall maintenance, provision of fenders, dredging of channels and provision of pilotage and towage services.
On congestion of roads leading to the ports raised by the Chairman of the Committee, Senator Gbenga Obadara, Abdullahi said the repair of roads outside the port is the responsibility of the Federal Ministry of Works, adding that the NPA has made remarkable progress in the area of roads within the ports while contract has already been awarded for the construction of Oshodi-Apapa Express road. He pointed out that fenders have been procured to protect quay walls at all the nation’s seaports.
While noting that the ports in Apapa were built a long time ago when there was little or no commercial activities, he assured the Committee that the 25 year development plan approved for the ports will give rise to new ports outside Lagos.
Speaking earlier, Chairman of the Committee, Senator Gbenga Obadara said the visit was aimed at finding out how privatisation exercise has fared since port concession.
He said his committee is concerned about the benefits and challenges of the privatisation exercise and called for effective collaboration among all stakeholders for the generation of appropriate revenue to into the coffers of the Federal Government.
The Committee which visited Five Star Logistics and Josepdam Port Services Limited was accompanied by the Executive Director Engineering and Technical Services, Mohammed Saleh, General Manager Western Port, Miss Adenike Sonaike, Port Manager Tin Can Island Port, Mr. Babatunde Longe and others.
Other members of the committee who visited NPA include Senator Banabas Gemade, Senator Abubakar Tutare and the representative of the Bureau of Public Enterprises, Malam Aliyu Maigari.