The House of Representatives has vowed to investigate alleged payment of $50,000 to the Nigerian Navy before escorting vessels through Nigerian waterways to their destinations.
The House took the decisions after it received and considered the report of the Ad-hoc Committee, chaired by Buba Yakub (APC,Adamawa), on the failure to put Warri, Port Harcourt, Onne, Calabar and Onitsha Ports to maximun use.
The report was considered by the Committee of the Whole, chaired by the Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Idris Wase, at the plenary.
It called on the Federal Government to encourage the Nigerian Navy to commence the actualization of the National Charting Scheme by developing indigenous charting capacity that will ensure self-reliance in surveying and charting of Nigerian waters and end the practice of sending survey reports to the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO).
It also urged the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to survey and replace aids to navigating the waterways leading to the aforementioned ports while urging the Federal Government to facilitate the rehabilitation and re-construction of the Eastern roads leading to the ports, and railways to link all the State capitals.
The Committee also urged the “NPA to ensure the provision of appropriate cargo handling infrastructure for seamless port operations in the Eastern ports”, and “the NPA to enforce the provision of modern cargo equipment as a prerequisite for engagement as an operator.
It also called on the NPA to provide tug boats, pilot cutters and breakwaters for the safety of the waterways and to dredge all the ports to the minimum standard of 9-13 meters to allow vessels into those zones.
The report also recommended further investigation of the Ministry of Transportation and the NPA on all dredging contracts awarded in the last 10 years.