General Manager of Eastern Ports, Mr. Abubakar Umar, made the call while speaking at the 2017 Stakeholders Maritme Summit organsed by the Maritime Energy Media Practitioners of Nigeria, MEMPON, in Port Harcourt.
Umar speaking on the topic; ‘Challenges and Prospects of Elite Rivers Ports’ said the Rivers Port Complex has been repositioned to deliver efficient services in a safe, secure and customer friendly environment.
He explained that with the port’s strategic location in one of the world’s largest crude oil producing region, there is a ready market for businesses to thrive.
“A modern facility of ship repair yard is recommended for the dockyard. The Dockyard as a strategic source of revenue generation should be revamped to meet the challenges of repairs of boats and crafts.
“The Rivers Port Complex is located in a city where barges and other crafts provides support services to oil and gas companies and Dockyards will serve a good purpose for such repairs.
“Opposite the Port Harcourt hard quay with 100metres high tide which is swampy, could be develop for future jetty operations.”
The NPA boss also said challenges of the Rivers port include epileptic power supply from the national grid, modernization and rehabliitaion of the berths, decayed infrastructures, planned and regular dredging of channel, lack of functional water hydrant in the port etc.
Also speaking, the General Manager of Onne Seaport, Mr Alhassan Abubakar, represented by the Public Relations Officer, Mrs. Nche Achuku, called for increased patronage of the Eastern ports, saying “We need container vessels to berth in the Eastern ports.”
Earlier in his remark, Chairman of the event, Archbishop Dr. Elkanah Harrison, charged the federal government to give equal opportunities to all seaports in the country.
Harrison decried that the policy where certain goods are not allowed to passed through some seaports was not in the best interest in the country.
“Every seaport and even airports should be allowed to import everything that is allowed to be imported. All Nigerian ports should be opened to allow importers decide which port to use. The one port policy of the Nigeria’s government should be abrogated.”