LAGOS – Hajiya Maryam Ciroma, the Managing Director of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), said on Wednesday that the Federal Government had invested over N36 billion to boost water transportation in the country.
Ciroma told a news conference in Lagos that part of the money was spent in dredging the Onitsha River Port and some other inland ports in the country for proper usage.
“The river ports when officially opened, will allow businessmen in Onitsha to move wares and equipment along River Niger from the Delta tributaries to any part of the country.
“Developing water transportation will create employment, generate revenue as well as attract other related investments into the country.
“Development of port areas will turn the city (Onitsha) into full business engagement and maritime services destination.”
Ciroma said that the news conference would help in sensitising the public on the usefulness of the lnland ports, improvement in water transportation and opened up avenues to improve the people’s welfare.
The managing director expressed satisfaction with the development of water transportation, adding that the ports in the country should be able to meet international standard and compete with their foreign counterparts.
She said that an international conference would soon be organised to exhibit the inland water transport potential which local and foreign investors could invest in.
“Investing in the inland water potential will boost our economy, “ Ciroma said.
Ciroma seeks partnership with the oil and gas, banking, hotels, steel and mines industries as well as entrepreneurs to utilise the immense potential at the nation’s waterways. (NAN)