Construction of the National Freight Office(NFO) in Illela, Sokoto, has been completed and now set for operations.
The Hon. Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, made this known on Friday during the Executive Session of the 16th National Council on Transportation, which held in Kano State.
Similar projects are being replicated in Jibiya, Katsina State and in Idiroko, Ogun State.
The Minister recognised and appreciated efforts of the different departments and of the Ministry of Transportation for their dedication to work to ensure they achieved their goals in all the programmes embarked on, and disclosed that the NFOs in Jibiya and Idiroko were near completion.
The minister appreciated the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) for the take-off of the Deep Blue Project with all its assets; vessels, aircrafts and other that were gadgets acquired.
He also recognised the Ministry’s achievements in the rail transport sector as well as efforts of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), particularly with the Lekki Deep Seaport and efforts in decongesting Apapa Port.
He, however, lamented that the contractor handling Lekki deep seaport had requested for more time to complete the project which was earlier slated to be completed by the end of the year.
He said, “I have given them till December 2022 to deliver the project for commissioning. The NPA should follow up on this and make sure we meet that target.”
He also mentioned achievements by the Nigerian Shippers Council, especially with the establishment of Dry Ports across the country.
In Kano, he expressed satisfaction that the work at Dala Inland Dry Port was progressing, as well as the primary school he instructed the contractor to build in the area.
“The last time I visited the site many children were following us all the way into the Dala Dry port. They were obviously out- of- school children, and I asked the contractor to build a primary school there and offer free education to the children in that area.
“The Permanent Secretary has briefed me that the school is now under construction. When we come for commissioning, we will commission both the school and the dry port.
“It is not enough to commission the school. So, we will neither commission the dry port nor the school except we see teachers and the children in the school. The last time I was there, the contractor assured me that it will be completed by December,” Amaechi said.
The Minister urged all sectors to work towards attracting private investors ; local and foreign, to fast-track the growth of the nation’s economy and closing the transport infrastructural gaps in the country, while thanking the Kano state government for their magnanimity in hosting the 2021 National Council on Transportation.
Amaechi earlier paid a courtesy call on the Emir of Kano, His Highness, Aminu Ado Bayero, who acknowledged the Minister’s development strides and prayed for more successes.
“I regard you as a brother and appreciate all your efforts in the Ministry of Transportation to reposition Nigeria. You make promises and deliver on them. You have fulfilled your promises to us, whatever you’re doing now is an added advantage to the promises already fulfilled. The emirate will continue to pray for you to continue your good work to make Nigeria great again,” The Emir said.
He also prayed for the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to succeed in all its endeavours.