BY ASU BEKS
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has come under severe attack from stakeholders in the nation’s maritime sector for alleging that management of Nigerian Ports Authority had completely abandoned the Eastern Ports. Wike who spoke weekend at the commissioning of ALCON NIG LTD low voltage plant in Port Harcourt had blamed the NPA for deliberately abandoning the Eastern Ports.
But in a swift reaction, President General of the Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, Comrade Adewale Adeyanju said there was no such a policy as ‘ deliberately abandoning Eastern Ports”. He explained that it is a global practice that an importer reserves the right to choose where he wants his cargo delivered. Comrade Adeyanju explained that majority of ibo traders and importers prefer to route their cargoes through the ports of Apapa and Tin Can due to its hub status. Said he: The market in Lagos is huge and no business man wants his capital tied down .The Customers are more disposed to Lagos where the logistics of inspecting the goods are simple and hassle free.
Represented by his Deputy Dr Ipalibo Harry, Wike took exception to the deplorable access roads to the Port Harcourt and Onne ports and that he had every reason to believe that there was a deliberate policy to undermine the eastern ports . He said: ‘The body language of the Federal Government suggests that ports’ abandonment was deliberate,noting that the Lagos ports currently booming has been overburdened and manufacturers are paying exhorbitantly to use them ‘