PHCN abandons 250 containers with vital equipment at ports

Ifenyinwa Obi

2 November 2011, Sweetcrude, Lagos – Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) may have abandoned no fewer than 250 containers, containing vital equipment imported to boost power generation in the country, at the ports, as Nigerians continue to groan under epileptic power supply.

Sweetcrude gathered that while about 140 of such containers were abandoned at the Ports and Cargo Terminal in Tin Can, the remaining 110 containers had been moved to Ikorodu Customs port to rot away as over time cargo, having stayed for more than three years without anybody going for them.

Similarly, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources has 59 abandoned containers meant for government projects, while Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, came third, with 25 containers; Delta Steel Mills has six containers; Ministry of Power and Steel, 15; Ministry of Works, 10 and Governments of Lagos, Rivers, Ondo and Delta States.
Some of the containers arrived the country in 2006.

It was gathered that PHCN leadership, which imported the equipment to boost power generation might have changed its mind in the belief that bringing them on board could jeopardize plans to order similar items as may be decided by management.

Meanwhile, Comptroller-General of Customs, Mr Dikko Abdullahi, has warned against further abandonment of government project laden containers in the port by government agencies, stressing that such recklessness affects legitimate Customs laws as far as disposal of abandoned goods by customs was concerned.

Abdullahi, who spoke weekend, during an official visit to the Ikorodu Customs Port to inspect some of the 28 containers belonging to PHCN, abandoned at the Lighter Terminal, said: “Some of these containers have been transferred to this terminal since 2006.”

The last sets of containers were brought here during the port decongestion exercise in 2009.
How can we rationalise spending tax payers’ money to import these containers, only to abandon them?”

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