Government awaits Tin Can Island-Apapa road design
Expectations were high at the weekend for the planned rehabilitation works on the Tincan-Apapa Port Road expected to start on November, as the Dangote group will submit the design tomorrow.
The revealation was made at a stakeholders meeting chaired by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, in Lagos, where some stakeholders expressed concerns over the state of the road.
The contract has been awarded to AG Dangote Construction Company Limited and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the Federal government and AG Dangote Construction Company Ltd, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and Flour Mills of Nigeria for the reconstruction of the four kilometres Apapa Wharf road with The project will gulp N4.34 billion
This has drawn accusations from stakeholders and a section of the media that it may outstretched the capacity of the A.G Dangote.
Fashola emphasized that the meeting was aimed at ameliorating the sufferings of users as Christmas approaches and that Dangote Group has offered a palliative intervention at Tincan road in that regard to being relief for Lagosians and commutters.
The minister said, the present government is poised to deal with the problem on the road and called for the cooperation and sacrifices from all stakeholders to ensure the successful completion of the project.
Fashola also called for sacrifice on the part of the various stakeholders as the Yuletide season is approaching to ensure speedy solution to all the problems. “During this period when everybody is sacrificing something, let us sacrifice, it is an exchange, everybody must sacrifice.
“This is not about us, it is about everybody,” he told stakeholders.
Speaking on behalf of tthe Dangote Group, Mr Joseph Makoju said that Dangote was handling and co-funding the Apapa Wharf Road reconstruction project as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
Makoju said that it was painful that the project was being misunderstood by both the public and a section of the media who make negative remarks against the Dangote Group instead of commending it for giving back to society.
He explained that the Dangote Group also suffered from the problems of gridlock and other problems caused by port congestions as it affected their businesses and operations as well.
Similarly, the Managing Director of AG Dangote Construction Company Ltd, contractors handling the project , Mr Ashif Juma, said that there was massive deployment of men and equipment to site as the rainy season ended adding that by November significant visible progress would be seen in the construction.
Juma explained that it was not easy to work on old roads because some unexpected problems usually came up in the midst of the project.
He added that the firm was working closely with the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing (FMPW$H) on the project and that work tempo would double in November.
Juma explained that the palliative was to start in November to ameliorate the sufferings of port users.
The stakeholders, after extensive deliberations agreed to resolve issues of logistics and regulation of truckers and port operations.
They called on shipping companies to return to the system of using their loading bays and effective call up systems to end port congestions.
They also advised AP Molar Multi Terminal (APMT), whose cargo operations take hours to emulate the operations of Port Terminal Multipurpose Ltd (PTML) who have perfected the act of evacuating cargo within minutes.
They agreed that emergency interventions should be carried out on the roads around Coconut bus stop area and some other bad portions.
They resolved to have another inclusive meeting with shippers, government regulatory agencies and other stakeholders who were absent at the gathering to evolve permanent solutions.
akeholders at the meeting included the three financiers of the project, AG Dangote Construction Company Ltd, Flour Mills of Nigeria Ltd and Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).
Others were National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Association of Maritime Truck Owners (AMATO) and National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO), among others.
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