FMOT Not Aware Of Planned Orashi River Dredging-Sambo
Fred Omotara, Lagos
The Federal Ministry of Transportation (FMOT) on Thursday, said that it is not aware of the planned dredging of Orashi River into a seaport by the Imo State Government.
Recall that the Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma, had last week said, the Federal Government has approved the dredging of Orashi River to the Atlantic Sea to serve as the first seaport in the South East region.
Governor Uzodinma, disclosed that the approval followed the visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to the state to commission projects executed by his administration.
According to Uzodinma, the dredging of the river port will enable traders from the zone to import and receive their goods directly while enjoying a comparative advantage as well as promote and encourage the business spirit of the people of South East.
However, in an interactive session with Journalists on the sideline of the 2022 World Maritime Day celebration in Lagos, the Honourable Minister of Transportation, Engr. Muazu Jaji Sambo stated that, “I was in the US when the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Muhammed sent me a text to confirm this Orashi River dredging and I forwarded the text to the Permanent Secretary who said there is nothing like that in the ministry.
“I know the Orashi River is an inland waterway and it falls under the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) purview. So, ifcthere is any planned dredging, NIWA must be aware of such. I have not been able to reach the NIWA MD, so I cannot talk further on this. As soon as I get the NIWA MD, I will make more details available to the media.
“Also, I have not been able to reach the Governor who is my friend to know whether it is the State government that intend to do the dredging.”