Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) Hadiza Bala Usman has said that the country’s Economic Recovery Growth Plan (EGRP) would not succeed unless the inherent decay in port infrastructures are addressed.
Hadiza stated this while addressing maritime stakeholders at the quarterly meeting of the Port Consultative Council (PCC) held in Lagos.
She pleaded support from stakeholders in the port industry for greater operational efficiency, saying that it is the desire of the federal government to make Nigerian Ports the leading Port in Africa.
Hadiza commended the PCC under it’s Chairman, Otunba Kunle Folarin for impacting positively on the maritime sector over the years.
She assured that the NPA management is equally committed to tackling critical challenges slowing down optimal performance at the ports in areas of maritime safety and security, Port Access Roads and Multimodal transportation of cargo despite the rich potentials at the country’s disposal.
Hadiza pointed out that “indeed analyzing the overriding objectives of the Federal Government, Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) depends largely on how swiftly we can correct the inherent deficits in our port infrastructure especially the Port Access Roads”
According to the NPA boss, Management has taken critical steps aimed at ameliorating the challenges of doing business within the port environment.
Some of the steps taken by her administration includes; palliatives at ending the gridlocks at Apapa Port axis, conversion of Lillypond Container Terminal into a holding bay for trucks, innovation with the automation of the Call-Up System for trucks and other incentives given for the transfer of cargo through barges from Ikorodu, Epe and Ijegun amongst others.
She further solicited for improved synergy by all stakeholders towards making the best use of the opportunities in the maritime sector to improve the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Also speaking, the Chairman Ports Consultative Council (PCC) Otunba Kunle Folarin appreciated and commended the MD NPA, Hadiza Bala Usman, stressing that her vast accomplishments have indeed impacted positively on the sector.
“We’ve continued to score a lot of mileage and we need the support of all agencies to move the council to the next level”.
Otunba Folarin explained that the PCC has been able to collaborate with stakeholders in the transport sector to bring required developmental progress to the industry, even as he called for more partnership and corporation from stakeholders.