Confirming this, the NPA Managing Director, Mallam Habib Abdullahi, said that the Authority would rather strengthen its Marine Services Department with the recruitment of more competent hands.
Abdullahi, who was speaking in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State, recently at the end of a two-day working tour of Rivers and Onne ports, explained that the NPA Management would render all necessary assistance to all the ports to ensure that they continue to progress.
He disclosed that the NPA Management has approved the commencement of rehabilitation of port facilities in the Eastern Zone.
The facilities include rehabilitation of the pilot cutter Imo, purchase of a brand-new ambulance for Port-Harcourt Clinic and the renovation of the warehouse office building to make it more conducive for workers.
Earlier in his welcome address, the General Manger, Eastern Ports, Mr. Sonny Nwobi, informed the NPA Managing Director that the Zone needs more tug boats to boost 24-hour ports operations.
Nwobi added that the Port-Harcourt Port would be 100 years in a few months and that the port would like to mark the event.
In her own speech, the Port Manager of Rivers Port, Mrs Carolyn Ufere, requested that the on-going rehabilitation of the zonal offices be extended to the port.
The Port Manager also pleaded with the Managing Director to intervene in the issue of the Nigerian Navy and the Joint Task Force (JTF), who, according to her, have occupied Bonny Jetty, thereby hampering operations along the channels.
Similarly the Port Manager of Onne Port, Malam Munir Umar, who commended the Managing Director for his open door policy, wants him to assist the port on the issue of security, provision of trailer park and provision of operational vehicles for official use.
On the entourage of the NPA Managing Director were, among others, the General Manager, Capital Projects, Engr. Rufai Mohammed; Special Assistant to the Managing Director, Mallam Abdullahi Buhari; and Assistant General Manager, Public Affairs, Mr Musa Iliya.