Current State Of Tin Can Island, Apapa Ports Shows Years Of Neglect, Says Minister
Minister of State for Transportation Gbemisola Saraki,, says it is important to mordenise the Apapa and Tin Can Island ports as the current state of the ports infrastructure signals years of neglect.
Saraki made this known during her tour of the Lagos port complexes on Monday.
“We cannot build on a weak foundation,” she said.
“It is vital that we get these two very important ports modernised and ready to berth modern vessels.
“The state of the port shows decades of neglect but it’s better late than never.”
Mohammed Bello-Koko, managing director of Nigerian Port Authority (NPA), said the authority was in talks with competent multilateral funding institutions.
“Although NPA had over the years been undertaking remedial works on the quays, the time has come for a wholistic reconstruction and the Authority is working with the Federal Ministry of Transportation on the most prudent funding option,” he said.
“We are on the verge of concluding discussions with multilateral funding agencies to fund the reconstruction.
“The other option is to go to the government to request that the NPA be allowed to use a certain percentage of its revenue, which is transferred to the consolidated revenue fund on yearly basis to fund the reconstruction.
“We transfer about N60 billion a year and we can use about 50 percent of that to repair Tin Can.
“Another option is to do hybrid funding where NPA funds part and multilateral agencies fund the rest.”
Bello-Koko said the final option was for the terminal operators to fund the reconstruction but the issue is that not all the terminal operators have the same financial capacity or will be able to source funds simultaneously.
He said the NPA does not want a haphazard reconstruction as commencing terminal A without funding for terminal B may affect the safety and integrity of neighbouring berths.
He added that the process would be properly coordinated — working with the ministry of transportation — to make the right decision.
“Cognisant of the urgency of the situation on ground, we might soon be seeking for federal executive council approvals,” he said.
“We have started working on securing a wholistic interim and conceptual design for the port, and we will eventually get the final design on move unto the procurement process.”