By Godfrey Bivbere and Ebuka Oko
Despite the just concluded dredging of the Delta port channel and efforts to commence that of Calabar port channel by the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, the Vice President of Association of Nigeria Tyre Marketers, ANTM, Okechukwu Ezeifeoma, has attributed the lull in business at Eastern and Delta ports to negligence by the current government.
Speaking with Vanguard Maritime Report, Ezeifeoma explained that the government is deliberately doing this to shut down activities at the Eastern ports and promote that of Lagos ports.
“When I say they, I mean the authority or the government in power. This is a deliberate action from them not to allow other sea ports to function by transferring a lot of people to these ports.
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“For example, you have goods in Ontisha and it is brought to Lagos and there is Port Harcourt there, why don’t you direct the goods to that place, what business does the person have with coming to Lagos. They will offload in Lagos and transfer the goods to Ontisha. They should open up other sea ports so that concentration will not be in Lagos”.
Ezeifeoma also suggested that government should make strategic efforts for these ports to start attracting patronages and work efficiently.
“Government should open up the ports, provide incentives and reduce levies and charges to attract patronage, the port is there already, and it’s for them to make it work. If there is anything that is not working they should put it in other, they are concentrating in Lagos because they don’t want to open the other ports” he added.