By YUSUF BABALOLA,
As the first batch of the Nigeria Yam Export Programme (NYEP) to the United Kingdom left the Lagos port for the United Kingdom yesterday, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Ms Hadiza Bala Usman promised to dedicate some terminals strictly for export.
In a press statement to LEADERSHIP by the principal manager, Public Relations, Ibrahim Nasiru, the yam were exported to the UK at the Lilypond Container Terminal, Ijora Apapa.
Speaking at the official flag off of the program, the managing director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) Hadiza Bala Usman who assured exporters of the authority’s readiness to put in place necessary facilities to support exportation in Nigeria
She said, “NPA is already looking at prioritizing some terminals strictly for export among which is Ikorodu but the only challenge with Ikorodu Terminal is the problem of low head room of the three bridge across the lagoon.”
She assured that several alternatives are being considered in other to play a pivotal role in the Federal Government’s drive to promote the export of solid minerals and agricultural produce through the nation’s seaports.
The MD who expressed pleasure to be part of the export of non – oil export through the Port added that Nigeria is richly blessed in the Agricultural sector and that time has come for the Nation to step up in the area of exportation of yam, being the largest producer of the product in the world.
The first female MD of NPA further emphasized that the development of intermodal transportation system would help a great deal especially rail link to the Ports which will cover almost 3,500km of existing narrow gauge lines from the South West commercial capital, Lagos to Kano in the North East rail lines.
She added that while it was important for Nigerians to return to the farm to produce enough yams for both local consumption and export, Usman pledges that everything would be done to guarantee smooth exportation from the Ports.