Awka — The member representing Idemili North and South Federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Hon Ifeanyi Ibezi, has lamented the poor state of ports in Nigeria, saying that they have contributed significantly to the dwindling economy of the country.
Ibezi is a member of the 14-man ad hoc committee set up by the House of Representatives to investigate, "why Warri, Port Harcourt, Onne, Calabar and Onitsha Inland ports complexes are not being put to maximum use."
Ibezi who spoke to THISDAY said the committee which would be visiting the various ports in Nigeria between September 15th-25th, 2019, to ascertain their current state would also conduct public hearings, saying the visit would help make recommendations that would cause the ports to function maximally.
He added: "The first leg of the committee's itinerary will commence on Monday, September 16, 2019 with a visit to Apapa and Tin Can Island, Lagos ports. The committee will be in Warri on Tuesday, September 17.
"Between September 18-19, the committee will visit Port Harcourt and Onne ports. From there they will move to Calabar on September 20. The committee will end its tour in Onitsha between September 23-24 with a visit to Inland port and conduct public hearing."
Ibezi, had in July sponsored a motion which sought to restore the full use of Warri, Port Harcourt, Onne, Calabar and Onitsha Inland ports in order to decongest Apapa and Tin Can Island ports. His motion has led to the setting up of the committee.
The committee include: Hon. Baba Yusuf Yakub as its Chairman, Hon. Makama Missau Ibrahim, Hon. Onuh Blessing Onyeche, Hon. Haruna Maitala, Hon. Victor Amela, Hon. Nuhu Yakubu Danja, and Hon. Aliyu Ibrahim Almustapha.
Others are Hon. Alex Egbona, Hon. Akiolu Moshood Kayode, Hon. Kolade Victor Akinjo, Hon. Olayide Adewale Akinremi, Hon. Kalu Benjamin Okezie and Hon. Suny Goli Isreal and Hon Ibezi who moved the motion.
Ibezi told THISDAY that, "I am convinced that reviving the existing ports at Warri, Port Harcourt, Onne, Calabar and Onitsha Inland port will require political will and strong policy initiatives and doing this will significantly increase government revenue profile, enhance export/import businesses and reduce the undue pressure on the Apapa and Tin Can ports complexes."