By Obinna Amaobi
The federal government has expressed his satisfaction with the increased pace of work on the construction of the Lekki Deep Sea Port.
Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Rotimi stated this comment in Lagos during his inspection of the port site in Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos, in the company of top government functionaries from the Federal Ministry of Transportation and Heads of relevant agencies, including the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and the Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC).
Speaking shortly after his tour of the port site, the Minister commended the promoters on the pace of work. He urged them to double their effort on the construction to complete the Port and start operations ahead of schedule.
“I am happy; from the last time we came here, there has been huge progress; what this shows is that when you set your mind on something, you can achieve it. The agreement was that we would commission by the last quarter of 2022, but if we double our effort on this project, we could commission by July or August, and that would be great”, he said.
Speaking during the tour, the Chief Technical Officer, Lekki Port, Mr Steven Heukelom, explained that construction work on the project is on course and as scheduled.
He noted that dredging and reclamation works had reached 89.93 per cent completion, Quay Wall 85.65 per cent completion, Breakwater 79.66 per cent completion, the landside infrastructure development 67.82 per cent completion, thus bringing total works carried out on the project to approximately 80% completion stage.
Heukelom also informed the Honourable Minister that work has commenced on the marine services jetty, which the NPA will use to carry out their marine services obligation.
He commended the Acting Managing Director, Mohammed Bello-Koko, for the support and partnership in preparing the Port to start operations.
Mr Muhammed Bello-Koko reaffirmed the agency’s readiness to provide marine services for the Ports operations. To this end, he disclosed that NPA is procuring tug boats and other necessary infrastructure for the smooth take-off of the Port.
In his remarks, the Chief Operating Officer of Lekki Port, Laurence Smith, reaffirmed the company’s commitment to delivering the project by the fourth quarter of 2022. He noted that the EPC Contractor, China Habour Engineering LFTZ Enterprise, is working day and night to make this commitment a reality.
Smith expressed confidence that the Port, upon completion, would be a world-class port and would become a regional distribution and transhipment hub for the African region.
Lekki Port is being developed by Tolaram and China Harbour Engineering Company. The Lagos State Government and NPA are also shareholders in the project company. The Port is scheduled to start port operations by the end of 2022.