By Chesa Chesa
The Federal Government has okayed the dredging of Warri Seaport in Delta State and the refurbishment of its navigational facilities at a cost of N13 billion.
It also approved contracts worth N47 billion for road projects in the country, including the redesign and reconstruction of the Aba/Port-Harcourt section of the Enugu/Port Harcourt Expressway.
The decisions were taken on Wednesday by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) at its meeting chaired by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo,
The Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, announced this after the FEC approved the proposal as requested by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).
NPA Managing Director, Mrs. Hadiza Bala Usman, who led senior officials of the organisation to the Villa to defend the proposal, told newsmen that the dredging of the Escravos channel of the seaport would improve the fortunes of the Warri Port and expand the utilisation of our Eastern seaports.
She said that the NPA had also reached an advanced stage towards dredging the Calabar Port, disclosing that previous contracts were terminated for not going through the relevant procurement processes.
She said that the revenue generation at NPA was increasing because she insisted that debts must be paid, and full compliance and deployment of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) to block leakages and ensure seamless accounting processes.
Also, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, told State House correspondents that the contract for the Aba-Port Harcourt section of the federal highway amounts to N6.3 billion.
He explained that the section needed such attention because it had persistently failed as a result of regular storm waters and high water-level of the area.
“The section four of the Enugu – Port Harcourt Road, the part between Aba and Port Harcourt, particularly the Port Harcourt axis has been problematic and has failed severally. We have a contractor there but we needed to change the design because of the storm water drainage needs and the high water table so that the road does not fail again.
“So, that requires a revision of the scope of work to include retaining side lanes and also drainage facilities in the sum of N6.309 billion,” Fashola stated.
The other contracts are for the rehabilitation of Babanlamba-Sharam in Plateau State at a cost of N19.2billion; and the Lagos-Ota-Abeokuta Road for N22 billion, bringing the total cost of the 81-km road to N56 billion.
While the Ministry of Education sought for FEC approval for the establishment of the Nigerian Army University in Biu, Borno State; the Ministry of the Interior, secured approval for the upgrade of infrastructure at the Nigeria Police Academy, Kano at the cost of N234 million.
The Minister of the Interior, Abdurahman Danbazzau, said that the new infrastructure would include faculty buildings, cafeteria, cadets’ mess, and others required to meet minimum academic requirements for relevant accreditation of degree courses in the academy as stipulated by National Universities Commission (NUC).
Water Resources Minister, Suleiman Adamu, disclosed that regressing urban water supply is hampering Nigeria’s attainment of MDGs, hence the FEC approved a declaration of emergency in the water and sanitation sector as well as increased funding for the sector, following an action plan submitted for consideration by the Ministry.
Presidential spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu, announced that the Minister of Women Affairs, Aisha Alhassan, got FEC commendation for her presentation on the activities of the ministry since 2015.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, also presented his ministry’s activities in the past three years; and an inter-ministerial committee was raised to advise the government on how the ministry and its parastatals can deliver more on their mandates.
By Chesa Chesa