Olokola Deep Seaport Gains Momentum, As Gov Dapo Abiodun Seek Shippers Council Guidance


L-R: Secretary to the State Government of Ogun State, Tokunbo Talabi, Executive Secretary of Nigerian Shippers Council, Barr Pius Ukeyima Akutah, and Ogun State Commissioner of Transportation, Gbenga Dairo at the opening ceremony of Shippers Council's strategic management retreat in Abeokuta on Thursday


There are indications that the Olokola Deep Seaport located in Ogun Waterside Local Government Area of Ogun State, has gained momentum, even as the State Governor, Dapo Abiodun has appealed to the Nigerian Shippers Council for partnership and necessary guidance in ensuring that the Port conforms with international standards and rules of doing business.

The Governor who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Tokunbo Talabi said that all necessary approvals are now in place for the port construction to proceed.

Abiodun stated this at the 2024 Strategic Management Retreat of the Nigerian Shippers Council with the theme “Unlocking the Potentials of the Marine and Blue Economy for Rapid National Economic Development” held in Abeokuta on Thursday.

L-R: The ES/CEO, Nigerian Shippers’ Council (NSC), Barr. Akutah Pius, MON, and the Secretary to the State Government, Ogun State, Mr. Tokunbo Talabi at the opening of the NSC 2024 Strategic Management Retreat.

He said that the state is setting up a committee which would be interlacing with the port economic regulator to ensure that the due process is followed with the Olokola Deep Seaport.

“The Nigerian Shippers Council is very critical, especially in this climes, and the theme of your 2024 strategic management retreat is apt and we believe that the concept of Blue Economy has been there and you are now bringing it to the fore.

“For us, the issues that we would like the Shippers Council to look into in your strategic sessions is your engagement with your partners, there need to be a lot of information on what people stands to benefit from your agency.

“For instance, we have two ports, we have a dry port and a seaport coming up, this is the time for the state government to seat with you, because sometimes, we would have gone very far, two years down the line, we would now discover that we could have gotten direction from a better source.

“We are going to set up a committee to relate with you. We are setting up the Olokola Port, and i think all the approvals are in place now for us to proceed, the Shippers Council has to tell us more about what value to be brought to the table in terms of ease of doing business.

“However, we are not having anxieties about it because we have an Executive Secretary who has an open door and listening ears.

“The importance of the Shippers Council for the Marine and Blue Economy Sector is not earsay, first of all, everyone is looking at what they can take out of Nigeria in terms of export, and if you look at the situation presently, almost all the states are moving on to realising the potential of their Agri-produce.

Executive Secretary to Nigerian Shippers Council, Barr Pius Akutah (8th from right) and the Secretary to Ogun State Government, Tokunbo Talabi who represented Governor of Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun in a group photograph with Shippers Council directors and assistant directors

“In the next few years, we shall be seeing a significant improvement in outward traffic of Agric produce from Nigeria.

“We have enough importation ,but we need a port for complementing the outflow of cargoes so that the infolw and outflow can become attractive. Right now, vessels come here loaded and they go back empty” Abiodun stated

Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Shippers Council, Barr Pius Ukeyima Akutah in his address noted that the Agency had in November 2023 signed a performance bond with the Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola.

“As stipulated in the signed Bond, he said the Nigerian Shippers’ Council has committed to achieving several significant deliverables, including the Development and Implementation of a National Policy on Marine & Blue Economy” he said

Barr Akutah assured that the Council is also promoting efficiency in the Nation’s Seaports.

“Our focus is on streamlining port Operations, enhancing logistics, and facilitating seamless trade. These cannot be achieved without collaboration with other industry stakeholders, we must up our game by restructuring our operations and a culture change”

Other areas highlighted included; Completion and Operationalization of Critical Maritime Projects: This includes the establishment of Inland Dry Ports and Vehicle Transit Areas, crucial for efficient cargo movement.

“Deployment and Operationalization of an Enterprise Content Management System (ECM)

“The Nigerian Shippers’ Council remains steadfast in its commitment to ensuring that the marine and blue economy sector significantly contributes to our nation’s GDP. Our performance will be rigorously assessed on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis, as we strive to meet and exceed our responsibilities.

“Over the next few days, we have the privilege to delve deep into critical issues outlined in the ministry’s agenda, exchange ideas, and chart a course of action that will unlock the full potentials of the marine and blue economy ministry” he said

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