FG pledges support for SIFAX new container terminal
*As Ministerial Committee lauds SIFAX Group on use of sophisticated equipment
By Udeme Clement :
The Federal Government has promised to support the vision of the newly-opened terminal in Lagos by SIFAX Group.
SIFAX Container Terminal located at Ijora, Lagos was established to address the challenge of traffic congestion around Lagos ports. Its vantage position, which is on the fringes of the port environment, will allow it to receive consignments from both Apapa and Tin Can Island ports through barges, without complications of traffic congestion that has adversely affected businesses and port activities.
Speaking during assessment visit by Ministry of Transportation’s Ministerial Implementation Committee to the new terminal in Lagos, the leader of the delegation and Director, Maritime Services, Federal Ministry of Transportation, Auwalu Suleiman, expressed the committee’s satisfaction with the facilities provided. He lauded the company for the huge vision it has set for inland container depot.
He said: “We are here at the instance of the Minister of Transportation to inspect the terminal and make sure that it conforms to all relevant requirements stipulated by law in setting up an inland container terminal. So far, we are impressed with the standards you have set in terms of space, equipment, facilities, your vision and future plan.
“It is also our intention to recommend to the government that this terminal should be adopted as a model for all future off docks that would be sited in Nigeria. We have compiled all your needs and complaints and they will be forwarded to all the relevant authorities for proper and immediate action”.
Earlier in his welcome address, Dr. Taiwo Afolabi, Group Executive Vice Chairman, SIFAX Group, who was represented by Capt. Ibraheem Olugbade, Executive Director, SIFAX Off Dock, informed the government officials that the terminal’s concept and design are in line with existing SIFAX Group business plan of continuous expansion, proffering solutions, growing improvements in the maritime sector and logistics value chain, meeting customers’ expectations and complying with government’s regulations.
Afolabi also appealed for government’s support in achieving the vision of the terminal, especially dredging of the waterways for barges to access the terminal.
The committee is made up of officials from the Federal Ministry of Transportation, Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC), Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), as well as National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA).