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Akwa Ibom Gets Licence for Ibaka Deep Seaport

The Akwa Ibom State Government has got a licence for the construction of its deep seaport situated at Ibaka, Mbo Local Government Area, the state governor, Chief Godswill Akpabio has said.

Besides the terminal for containers and cargoes, the Ibaka Deep Seaport comprises a Free Trade Zone (FTZ), as well as an industrial city. The proposed deep seaport which already has a natural depth of about 13 meters is expected to attract ocean going vessels as continuous dredging of the channels which has gulped billions of United States of America (USA) dollars to keep Lagos and Bonny channels navigable will not be the case of Ibaka deep seaport.

Already, the state government had acquired 14, 900 hectares of land to ensure the successful take-off of the multibillion naira project.

The governor, who disclosed this in the state capital, Uyo   during the visit of the Chairman of Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Senator Ken Nnamani, stated that the development of the seaport would be done through Public-Private-Partnership (PPP).

He enjoined ICRC to be fully involved in the execution of the project as scheduled.

His words: “We have worked really hard to fast-track the emergence of Ibaka Deep Seaport, which has a free trade zone. We have also received a license from the Federal Government for the commencement of the project. The Ibaka Deep Seaport would change the matrix of the unemployed in the country; it will attract investors to the state”.

Akpabio, who restated that his administration was committed to building a sustainable economy through infrastructure development in the state, lauded the chairman of ICRC and his team for the presentation made on the development of the Ibaka Deep Seaport. He said that their visit had rekindled the hope that the seaport project would be realised through PPP.

The governor also called on ICRC to partner the state government on the construction of dual carriage way on Uyo-Aba Road, saying that the road would have a toll gate as approved by the Federal Government.

The Chairman of ICRC had earlier in his opening remarks said that the commission was in the state to “share current issues in the commission with the state government”, even as he commended Akpabio for promoting the concept of uncommon transformation of the state through infrastructural development.

Nnamani, who is a former President of the Senate, noted that the state had alaready developed  most of its infrastructure, saying what is next is  industrialisation. He also said that the governor had laid foundation for investment in the state and assured that the commission would encourage him to do more.
ICRC Executive Director, Public Private Partnership, Mr. Chidi Izuwah in his presentation said that the visit was to discuss how to sustain the infrastructure development in the state.

Apparently alluding to the fact that the governor is on the lap of his eight years tenure in office, he argued that the projects executed by Akpabio’s administration needed a framework to be developed for them for sustainability.

The Executive Director assured that ICRC would partner the state government on the development of the Ibaka Deep Seaport.
According to Izuwah, PPP was the appropriate choice for the maintenance of projects executed by Akpabio in the state.

 

Culled from Thisday

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