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Nigerian govt approves N13bn for Warri seaport dredging

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The Federal Executive Council on Wednesday approved a contract for the dredging of the Warri Escravos seaport.

The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, stated this while briefing State House correspondents on the outcome of the cabinet meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

The minister said a sum of N13 billion would be spent on the project.

Amaechi said the approval was sequel to a memo presented by his ministry.

Earlier, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Hadiza Bala Usman, had said the project would fundamentally change the fortunes of Warri ports.

“It’ll expand the utilization of our eastern ports, we believe in the need to ensure that all ports locations are given the seamless access by providing dredging works and that is what we are here to do today,” she added.

She said the procurement of the dredging works for the Calabar port had also reached an advanced state, noting that “We inherited a system that did not go through the relevant processes which we terminated. We’re now almost concluding Calabar and we’ll also come and seek Federal Executive Council’s consideration for that.”

Hadiza, who said that NPA had been able to ensure transparency and eliminate corrupt practices, stated that the agency had been able to block revenue leakages and have seamless accounting processes by ensuring payment of debts and compliance with the Treasury Single Account.

She, however, said corruption was fighting back all the time as “We’ve had instances where corruption is pushing back and we’ve remained resolute with the support of Mr. President in assisting us to fight corrupt practices in the Nigerian Ports Authority.

Hadiza said the NPA had saved billions of dollars in eliminating corrupt practices as the government had been able to remove the monopoly of the oil and gas cargo.

“Now, in the Nigerian oil and gas you are able to take cargoes anywhere leading to any location in the country. Hitherto, designated terminals got priority considerations to the extent that only those terminals had access to oil and gas cargo which made exploration of oil and gas in the country very expensive.

“This has tremendously assisted, we’ve saved billions and billions of dollars in crude exploration following the removal of the monopoly by President Muhammadu Buhari of oil and gas cargo designation,” she added

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