Nigerian Ports, Harbours Authority Bill passes second reading at Senate

The bill that would provide for the ownership, management and development of ports and harbours, on Thursday, passed the second reading at the Senate.

The central theme of the bill revolved around the efficient and more profitable management of the Nigerian Maritime space, as enunciated in Section 1, Sub-section 1, Paragraphs (a) to (d), of the proposed bill.

The bill, tagged:  “Nigerian Ports and Harbours Authority”, which was read for the first time on May 26, 2016, was sponsored by Senator Emmanuel Andy Uba of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from  Anambra South.

While presenting the lead debate, Senator  Uba,   said that the bill seeks to repeal  the Nigerian Ports Authority Act, Cap 126 LFN 2004 and  would equally establish the Nigerian Ports and Harbours Authority.

He said the bill, when it becomes law, would provide an appropriate institutional framework for the ownership, management, operation, development and control of ports and harbours, in a bid to ensure the integrity, efficiency and safety of  ports, based on the principles of accountability, competition, fairness and transparency.

According to him, the bill essentially encourages greater private sector participation in the maritime industry, through avenues for private investment in port infrastructure, provision of port services and facilities.

He added that when the bill becomes law, it  will transform this critical sector of the economy and as well promote internal and international trade,aimed at job creation, efficiency, productivity and improved service delivery.