The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, yesterday hinted that efforts are currently ongoing to ensure that Badagry seaport in Lagos gets approval to commence construction before May, 2023.
Amaechi, speaking to the press shortly after the inspection of Lekki Deep seaport and before the arrival of the President, Muhammadu Buhari, disclosed that it was necessary for government to utilise other ports in the country in order to avoid congestion in one port.
He stated that ports like, “Ibaka and Badagry are private seaports. I think Ibaka has gotten approval. We are fast-tracking that of Badagry so that they can also get their approval. By the time we leave office, all those ports will be approved,” he said.
He maintain that the “only port that government may participate in its ownership is the Bonny seaport”.
Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari visited Lekki seaport after inaurating Dangote fertilizer plant that is also located in Lekki, Lagos State.
Though the President did not stay long at the port, Amaechi said the news of Buhari’s visit increased the speed of work at the port.
He said: “When I was making the case to the president on why he needed to come to the seaport, most people did not understand why.
Do you see the huge difference between when we came two weeks ago and now?
“There are two reasons why I asked the president to come, the first one is to publicise the seaport so that they will know that this government is building a seaport and the first seaport in Nigeria. The other ports we have in Nigeria are all river ports because they tilt off the sea.
“The second reason was to put the heat on them (constructors) and with that, we are almost ready. if not for the equipment, they can actually get this place ready before June but they said all the equipment are arriving by June and installation will take them till September and it can be commissioned by September.
“You see the miracle of bringing a president to this place. That is why Presidents must also inspect projects, that will hasten the process if there is money for completion” he stated.