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Bad Port access roads: Like Lagos, like Onne—BH Report


Barely one month after the dishing out of Executive Order (EO) to drive ease of doing business at ports and 24 hours port operations, studies by Business Hilights Economic Research Team (BHERT) has shown that the situation at both Lagos Ports and Onne has become worst by deplorable port access roads. The difference between Lagos and Onne ports’ road is that just as working is ongoing on Lagos Wharf road, Onne Port road is still unattended.

However, the federal lawmakers recently called questioned the state of the East-West Road which Onne port road was part of and may institute enquiry into what transpaired on the contract starting from Obasanjo administration till date that caused non completion of the inter-state highway.

Onne end of the road is worst and there is no hope insight.

Findings from a drive along the formally massive federal expressway weekend showed high level suffering of articulated vehicle drivers who are stocked at different points of the now unmotorable road due to bad state fueled by rainfal at very close intervals on the highway.

Otherwise, the deplorable condition of the East-West Road, especially the portion between Eleme junction and Onne Port has become real nightmares as trucks fall on cars regularly killing people. Besides, some motorists who spoke to our correspondent say they spend several hours trying to navigate through potholes and craters.

From the popular Eleme junction to Onne, is very strategic as it serves not only as the gateway to Onne Port but also plays host to oil and gas service firms.

The revenue raked in by the government from Lagos Ports, Onne port and the Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone alone and the number oil and gas industries in the free zone put an average Nigerian on the verge of asking what may be considered by the apex government in leaving the strategic highways to total collapse.

The major road, which straddles six states in the South-South region of the country, is as appalling as the roads leading to the ports in Apapa, Lagos.

Further discoveries from locals on Onne road show that the stretch had been abandoned for years by the Federal Government and while the Rivers State government rallied private companies two years ago to raise N3 billion for palliative works, the road is back to a most deplorable condition.

In an interview with a top official of the INTELS Limited, core investor at Onne FTZ, he said the company had about two to three years ago invested about one to three billion dollars to fix the road but its efforts was never complemented by any other entity thus leading to the current state of disrepairs.

The official who pleaded anonymity averred that “The best bet will be for the government to replicate what it’s doing now on Wharf road in Lagos, here at Onne to give the Free Zone a real sense of belonging.

“We are hosting several local and international investors who have companies on the Zone. They deserve better infrastructure to do their business because they are all paying their taxes.