Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, Nigeria’s Minister of Transportation, has directed Dr. Magdalene Ajani, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, and the legal department to document an agreement with the Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Ltd., to ensure that the port becomes operational in 2022.
The Minister of Transportation gave this directive while inspecting the Lekki Deep Sea Port project at Ibeju Lekki, which is expected to be completed in 2022.
According to a news report by NAN, the agreement to commission the port in 2022 took place in Singapore. Hence, Mr. Amaechi wondered why the construction company was stating 2023 as the operational year of the port.
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He reiterated that the sluggish pace of the construction of the port can not be fully attributed to the COVID-19 induced lockdown, although there had been hitches on the way. Thus, it is important that the project becomes operational by 2022.
Why this matters
Upon completion, the Lekki Deep Sea Port would become the first deep seaport in Nigeria.
It would have two container berths of 680 meters long and 16.5 meters water depth, making it Nigeria’s Deepest Sea Port in the making, in the heart of the Lagos Free Trade Zone.
The port will also have the capacity to be berthed by fifth-generation container ships with a capacity of 18,000 TEU ship.
Therefore, when completed it would take a lot of pressure off Apapa and Tin Can Island ports.
What they are saying
Commenting about the Lekki Deep Sea Project, Mr. Amachi said: “The contract for the facility was launched in March 2018, and as a layman, my views might not matter. However, we must tie them to a written agreement that it must be commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2022.
“There are so many things tied to a port construction and many factors that can work against that date like force majeure issues or if anything goes wrong with the contractor. That is why we need to tie them to a verbal and written agreement that by 2022, Lekki port must become operational.”