By DAPO OLAWUNI
The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has began a strict access control into the PTML area of the Tin Can Island Port, following the expected visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to the MRS Petrolatum Tank Farm next week.
President Muhammadu Buhari will be in Lagos on Monday and Tuesday for a two-day working visit to commission five projects within the State.
In the course of the visit, the President is expected to commission the newly completed MRS Lubricant factory at Tin Can Island Port.
DAILY TREND correspondent who visited the port on Thursday and Friday reported that NPA has started restricting port users who have no business or identification from entering the port area.
At the Abuja access gate into PTML Terminal, NPA port security officials as well as the Nigerian Police were seen demanding for proper identification from port users before they are allowed into the port premises.
Meanwhile access through the 1st gate and 2nd gate of the Tin Can port area were still porous.
Sources however confirmed to our correspondent that access into the port as from Monday and Tuesday next week will be more difficult, and that there would be low port activity during the President’s visit.
Our correspondent also gathered that all articulated trucks and container laden trucks would also be evacuated from the roads over the weekend to pave way for easy access in and out of the port.
Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Gbenga Omotoso told journalists on Friday during a press conference in Alausa, Ikeja, that the projects to be inspected and commissioned by President Buhari are; Lekki Deep Sea Port, 32-metric tons per hour Lagos Rice Mill, 18.75-kilometre six-lane rigid-pavement Eleko Junction to Epe Expressway, John Randle Centre for Yoruba Culture and History, and Phase One of the iconic Lagos Blue Line rail project, as well as turning of the sod for the second phase of the project.
Omotoso, who was addressed the media alongside the Commissioner for Transportation, Dr Fredericks Oladehinde; Special Adviser on Works and Infrastructure, Engr Aramide Adeyoye; her Tourism, Arts and Culture counterpart, Mr Femi Martins; Managing Director, Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), Engr. Abimbola Akinajo, among others, said President Buhari’s visit to Lagos is tagged ‘A Festival of Project Commissioning.’
“Mr President is scheduled to arrive in Lagos on Monday, January 23, via the Presidential Wing of the Murtala Muhammad Airport, where he would be received by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and some top dignitaries. There will be a short ceremony, which will include a cultural display, presentation of bouquet and inspection of the guard of honour by the special guest.
“Thereafter, Mr Governor will lead the guest on a helicopter to the Lekki Deep Sea Port for the official commissioning of the largest Sea Port in Sub-Saharan Africa. Mr. President and his host would be received at the Lekki Deep Sea Port by top Government functionaries and board members of the Lekki Deep Sea Port. There would also be a tour of the Lekki Deep Sea Port facility by the President, Mr. Governor and other guests.
“The President is expected to drive through and commission the newly constructed Eleko Junction to Epe road project before departing via helicopter to the Lagos Rice Mill in Imota. While at Imota, Mr. President will take a tour of the Rice Mill facilities and show Lagos State Government’s readiness to bridge the deficit in local rice production. The President will commission the Rice Mill
“He will depart Apapa for the John Randle Centre for Yoruba Culture and History for commissioning and a tour of the Museum. The John Randle Museum, the first of its kind in black Africa, will afford the President the opportunity to interact with art enthusiasts, curators, historians and academia, and students who have been invited to the programme.
Subsequently, Mr. President will move to the Lagos Blue Line Rail Project in Marina, where different activities have been lined up for him. At the Blue Line Terminal, Mr. President will witness the signing of phase II of the rail project, which begins from Mile 2 to Okokomaiko. He will also commission Phase I and take a train ride from Marina to Mile 2 and back, and depart. Lagos,” he added.
The Commissioner for Information and Strategy said the security personnel will be at strategic places to prevent unforeseen circumstances. He implored residents not to panic due to the influx of security operatives deployed for the presidential visits to the State as provided in developed countries.
Also speaking, the Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Frederic Oladeinde, said there will be restrictions on some roads including the Ademola Adetokunbo road on Victoria Island from 6am to 3pm on Tuesday, January 24 and therefore urged motorists going to the Island to make use of the Falomo bridge route.
Dr Oladeinde also appealed to the motoring public to exercise patience and cooperate with traffic management personnel to ensure free vehicular movement.