A cargo scanner valued atÂ Â over N750 million is lyingÂ Â idle at the Calabar port, the Chief Executive Officer of Global Scansystems Ltd, Mr Fred Udechukwu, has said. Udechukwu told the news Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Calabar on Monday that one year after his firm installed the HCV Mobile scanner, the scanner had only performed less than 5 per cent of its installed capacity.
He said that activities at the port had remained at low ebb since the scanner was installed in 2006 because ships hardly berth at the port. Udechukwu said that the company only handled 20 single Goods Declaration Forms (SGD) in one month.According to him, the company is servicing a bank loan because it has to pay salaries of workers and spend a lot of money on diesel to power its generators.
The chief executive said that unless the Federal Government dredged the Calabar River for bigger ships to berth, activities at the port would remain low.
The port operator said that no ship owner would want his ship to run aground hence only smaller vessels come into the port. He described Calabar as a â€œpeaceful cityâ€™â€™â€™â€™ that could attract large imports if government could dredge the port. He told NAN that the firm would, however, not relent in its efforts to ensure that contraband goods were not brought into the country through the port.