The Port Manager, Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), Onne Port Complex in Rivers State, Alhaji A. A. Goje, has called on the Federal Government to urgently come to the rescue of the port over the deplorable condition of the only access road to the port complex from Onne round- about.
Alhaji Goje made the call during a parley with members of the Maritime and Energy Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MEMP), who paid him a courtesy visit in his office at the port on Tuesday.
He said the deplorable situation of the road had been affecting business activities as movement of goods and personnel were most times stocked in a traffic gridlock.
According to him, it has been a great challenge for companies doing business at the port, especially at the Federal Lighter Terminal (FLT), as well as the Naval Training School, and stressed that there is urgent need for the government to come to their aid.
The port manager said the authority had been making concerted efforts towards attracting more importers to patronise the Port, and also hinted on the need to upgrade he FLT gate to a modern standard.
Alhaji Goje, who was represented by the Traffic Manager of the Port, Mr John Duru Olorunsaye noted that West Africa Container Terminal (WACT), has modern facilities and equipments as well as enough space for containers, saying that because of prize differential, most container vessels discharge their cargoes in Lagos, inspite of efforts by WACT to lure such importers to the port.
He disclosed that although the Port recorded about 250 service boats every month despite the low cargo turn-out, and assured that they would continue to improve on their services for more patronage.
On the issue of land allocation to the Oil and Gas Free Zone, the Port Manager said the land was acquired by the Federal Government for NPA, and that there was no law that authorised the management of the Port to allot land to the Oil and Gas Free Zone, who are their tenants.
He commended members of MEMP for their vision, assuring that their doors are open to partner with them.
Earlier, the president of MEMP, Nigeria, Bishop Ralph John said there was need to snergy with the Ports Authority as key agency in maritime and assured of assistance in publicising their operations for more patronage.