Muhammad Bello

 


Contracts worth N12.14 billion have been awarded by the Federal Government for maritime security and movement along the country’s coastal areas.

Transport Minister, Idris Umah

This was the outcome of Wednesday’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan where he explained that the decision to beef up security around the country’s coastal areas was in line with international guidelines and security regime required for enhanced comfort to shipping.

Scheduled to be completed in two years, the breakdown of the contract shows that N8.325billion was approved for land reclamation in Abam-Nnuju-Igbiri-Oba-Ojimba-Okujagu-Ama waterfront and resident supervision consultancy services work.

The FEC also approved the sum of N3.238billion for the purchase of six security boats, which the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, enumerated as the purchase of two number 17 manta MK ASD at the cost of N1.48billion ($9.43 million) and one 32million manta MK ASD in the sum of ($10.451 million) N1.57billion.

Similarly, the sum of N233.625million was approved for the procurement of three fast moving security boats to boost maritime security.

Another N321.510million was approved for the procurement of four fast moving 40-45 passengers’ water bus to ease movement of people around the country.

Also approved Wednesday was the sum of N236.666million for the procurement of 12/10 cutter suctions dredger with ancillary equipment.

Maku alongside his colleague in the ministry of Transport, Senator Idris Umar  presented the memos for the procurements of the boats and also the land reclamation said the memos were compelling given the security challenges in the country.

On the land reclamation, Maku said the Okrika, Rivers State, habitable land mass has been reduced to only 30% of its original size which has led to rural-urban migration and increase in rural poverty.

Umar noted that it was in an attempt to reverse the situation that he submitted the memo for the reclamation of land which has been reduced by erosion from surrounding coastal waters. He noted further that the project when completed will greatly address the rural poverty with presence for infrastructural development.

On the security boats, the minister of transport said the boats will enhance security at the Lagos pilotage district.

On the passengers’ boat, he said that it was “in order to promote movement along inland water ways. He also revealed that the water bus is expected to serve Port Harcourt to Onitsha, Calabar to Oron, Yenagoa to Nembe-Brass, Marina, and Lagos-Mile 11.

According to him, when completed, the project is expected to create 120 job opportunities for Nigerian professionals and non-professionals during the execution.

The transport minister also said the dredger equipment when procured will help in the maintenance and sustainability of the water ways which will make them navigable.

Also, as part of the efforts to improve service delivery, under Service Compact with all Nigerians (SERVICOM),  ministers and Head of agencies have been asked to chair SERVICOM committees in their various ministries and agencies.

He stated further that it was “in view of the fact that Servicom remains an important government instruments to meet challenges of nationwide service failure” that the council approved the report of the committee which reviewed the Servicom initiative.

 

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