.President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of Mr. Mohammed Bello-Koko as the substantive Managing Director, MD, of the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA.

By Godfrey Bivbere & Providence Ayanfeoluwa

Efforts by road construction workers in conjunction with illegal toll collectors to prolong the construction work along the Under Bridge – Fagbems end of the Apapa-Oshodi expressway was foiled by the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, Mohammed Bello-Koko.

Vanguard gathered that rather than start work from the Sunrise end of the road, officials of the construction company had convened with the illegal toll collectors to move work to the Cele end of the road while presenting pictures of completed areas of the road to the management as the Sunrise end.

Vanguard gathered that the intervention of Bello-Koko led to the speed up of construction work at Lot 2 which is from Sunrise to Cele bus stop of the Tin-can – Oshodi expressway in March this year.

Following complaints by the management of the Tin-can Island port in late February 2022, the NPA boss who was in Abuja at the time, had instructed the Port Manager to present him with evidence that works on Sunrise end had not been done.

The port management had gathered all the terminal operators of the port on a tour of the route where pictures and videos were taken and then forwarded to the NPA helmsman who in turn took the evidence to the then Minister of Transportation.

Vanguard learnt that the minister in the company of the Bello-Koko had gone to see Vice President Yemi Osimbajo, who in turn summoned the top management of construction company.

The construction company management had insisted that the Sunrise to Fagbems end of the road had been completed until the evidence were presented to them. Based on the evidence, the management had mobilised its workforce to site, explaining why there was a rush in construction of that area of the road in the last few months.

Vandalisation of Dangote Quarry site in Osun State has slowed down the pace of work at the Sunrise-Fagbems end of the road after construction work picked in March following the intervention of Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo.

Recall that the Chairman, Policy and Practice Committee of Nigerian Ports Consultative Council, NPCC, Okechukwu Vincent, said recently that the Council met with the management of HITECH Construction Company, the subcontractor handling the project, noting that the company confirmed the case of theft at the quarry.

Vincent said that the Council was disturbed at the suffering of port users due to noncompletion of the road project, and the blockage of the already completed portion of the Tin Can to Sunrise axis.

When Vanguard visited the site earlier this week, work on the road which was ongoing was being done half-hazardly with the entire width of the road from Sunrise to Fagbem’s end of the road not completed on both sides.

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