Category Archives: Maritime

Akwa Ibom begins manufacturing of Cargo Ships, Ferries, Barges, others

The Liberty Free Trade Zone licence and the Ibom Deep Seaport licence recently acquired through the ingenuity of Governor Udom Emmanuel, attest to the readiness of the state to become a melting point in marine transport business.

Subsequently, berthing in Akwa Ibom is the first ship manufacturing yard in Oruk Anam, with capacity to produce security vessels, cargo ships, ferries and barges.

Norfin Offshore Shipyard, located at Oruk Anam local government, is ready to launch its first Nigerian produced vessel on the January 23, 2021.

His Excellency, Mr Udom Emmanuel will be on ground to flag it open and further open the vista to more opportunities for the teaming youths of the state.

Charles Udonwa, an Akwa Ibom born ship merchant, is the chairman of the ship manufacturing factory and has assured that in the next three years, the factory which is currently engaging 85 will have well over 3,000 young people in its workforce.

Members of Government House Media Team, including the Governor’s Special Assistant on Media (Research and Documentation), Mr. Essien Ndueso, visited the Shipyard to assess the progress of work at the factory.

Conducting the team round the facility, the Chairman and CEO of the company, Engr. Udonwa explained that finishing touches were being put to the vessel by the technical unit of the company, assuring that by next week, the vessel would wear a new look in readiness for its launch into the sea.

Also in the team were the Special Assistant to the Governor on ICT, Engr. Solomon Eyo and the Special Assistant on Project Monitoring to the Governor, Mrs. Josephine Bassey as well as members of the Research and Documentation Team.

Militants attack shipyard in Akwa Ibom over failure to pay N20m settlement

Suspected militants on Monday attacked facilities at the new Norfin Offshore Shipyard located at the boundary shoreline of Ikot Ukpong in Oruk Anam Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State.

This followed the company’s alleged inability to allegedly settle them with the sum of N20m.

The attacks, it was gathered, led to the postponement of the commissioning of the shipyard initially billed for January 23, 2021 to January 30, by the Governor Udom Emmanuel

The armed men reportedly arrived at the yard at about 5am, shot sporadically to scare off security workers around the site before unleashing their explosives into the multimillion naira dredging facility of the company.

Chairman of the facility, Engr. Iniekong Charles Udonwa, who briefed newsmen at the site, condemned the damage done to facilities at the shipyard by the suspected militant group from Ogoni part of Rivers State.

According to Udonwa, “they said we cannot start any business with the government of Akwa Ibom without settling them.

“They kept telling our staff to tell the government of Akwa Ibom to reach out to them since they are in charge of both Rivers and Akwa Ibom States. Where do they expect me to get N20m naira from to give them after destroying our machine worth N60 million?”

He said he felt discouraged and demoralised by the incident adding that he was contemplating taking his investment elsewhere.

“The investment was borne out of my desire to contribute to the development of the State by providing employment opportunities for her teeming youths.

“At the last count, over 100 staff are working at the Shipyard with 4 of them from neighbouring Rivers State.” He said.

Engr. Udonwa appealed for a prompt intervention from the State government to forestall a recurrence of the ugly incident.

He however said the decision to postpone the date of the launch was regrettable and apologize for the inconveniences.

Wike commissions remodelled Rivers jetty, threatens to shut it down if…

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has threatened to shut down the Bonny-Bille-Nembe Jetty in Port Harcourt which conveys travelers to various riverine communities in the state if cases of criminality or physical violence in the area continued.

The governor said the zeal to provide an enabling environment for sea travelers and boost the marine economy of the state spurred his administration to remodel the once dilapidated jetty first built in the 1950s.

Wike stated this at the commissioning of the remodeled Bonny-Bille-Nembe Jetty by the Governor of Sokoto State, Rt. Hon Aminu Tambuwal on Saturday.

The governor in a statement by his media aide, Kelvin Ebiri Wike, said he decided to remodel the once filthy and disused jetty because he firmly believes that the people of the state deserve the best infrastructure required to boost economic activities and enhance the well-being of the people.

The governor noted that while the government will not relent in providing the infrastructure needed to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, it will not tolerate criminal activities around the remodeled jetty.

“Those of you too who will use this place, don’t turn it to a place of criminality. If you do that I will shut it down. I have no room for criminality and I want to tell anybody who cares,” he stated.

Wike further said he will not hesitate to shut down the jetty if any passenger travelling to and fro Bonny, Nembe or Bille is reportedly kidnapped around the jetty.

“Don’t come here and kill people. Don’t come here and kidnap people. Don’t come here to act like thugs and criminals,” he said, even as he directed the contractor to erect a concrete wall around the jetty in order to make it inaccessible for non-travellers.

He also directed the Commissioner for Transport to ensure the departure and arrival hall at the jetty is furnished within the next two weeks, just as he reiterated that the hope for a better and prosperous Nigeria depends on the return of the Peoples’ Democratic Party to power in 2023 and urged the people to continue to support the party.

APAPA GRIDLOCK: FG Agrees To Move Cargo By Barges To Onitsha

Heads of maritime agencies in Nigeria have agreed to work on modalities for the movement of cargo by barges from Lagos Ports to Onitsha in Anambra State so as to ease traffic in Apapa.

Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Bashir Jamoh, disclosed this at a recent meeting of all heads of maritime agencies in Lagos.

Mr. Jamoh said the meeting constituted a committee to produce a work plan for the 24-hour port system, and agreed to carry communities around the port environments along in order to ensure safe operations within the port vicinities and beyond.

“Our focus is also to ensure containers are moved by barges to dry ports outside the port environments. All these would help in the efficiency and effectiveness of our ports.”

Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, also emphasised the need for an intermodal transport system in and around the port environments.

She said Nigeria must prioritise intermodal transportation to reap the benefits of shipping and port activities.

Hadiza Usman said the heads of maritime agencies agreed to work with the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) to facilitate movement of cargo from the ports by rail.

Managing Director of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Dr. George Moghalu, said safety formed a major part of the discussion.