The new Manager, Nigerian Port Authority (NPA), Rivers Port, Mrs Kenechi Okezie, has said that the agency under her watch would prioritise four key areas of its mandates in order to boost the country’s economy.
Okezie said this at a brief ceremony organised by the Port management in Port Harcourt on Friday ahead of her official takeover from the outgoing Port Manager, Mr Michael Adamu.
She listed the four mandates of the agency to include better staff welfare, good customer service delivery, trade facilitation and revenue drive.
She said: “If the staff members are happy, the port manager is happy, the workforce is satisfied and the job is made easier.
“We will make sure we have good service delivery both with external and internal customers, including the ship community and terminal operators.
“We will make sure that the government agencies working with us are satisfied and their jobs are dealt with as and when due, not delayed.
“We will ensure that there will be satisfaction in trade facilitation, which is why NPA is in business, promoting trade in and out of the country and generating revenue for the port and country at large.
“We will also prioritise revenue drive because it is very important.
“Without money, there is little or nothing we can do because government has mandated NPA as the gateway to international economy to boost our economy.
“So, to ensure that revenue drive is up and about, we need to generate more revenue, we need to collect revenue generated and we also need to collect debts that are out there,” Okezie said.
She promised that, by the help of God, her administration would do all it could to ensure that the Rivers Port worked optimally to uphold the mission and vision of the authority.
She appealed for the support and cooperation of the members of staff.
She promised to run an open door policy and do whatever she could within her purview to make sure that positive results were achieved.
Eairlier, the former Manager said that his administration was able to execute and achieve all the mandate enunciated by the agency.
He expressed satisfaction that the port work environment was made more befitting during his tenure.
“We had as a plus a clean, renovated environment and the Managing Director’s gracious approval for new operational vehicles, which were not in place before I came.
According to him, the workers were diligently committed to their jobs and in attendance and these qualities improved the productivity of the port.
Adamu listed the mechanism put in place to control the issues of leakage in revenue as a major legacy of his tenure.
He urged his predecessor to coin and fine tune the mechanism into a working document that would help her through to achieve success.
He also listed promptness to responses in signing stakeholders’ requirements and swift attention to their issues without any hindrance as another achievement during his tenure.
“This is one of the integral parts of the Presidential Directives on the ease of doing business.
“We integrate all these to make sure that the international communities appreciate that NPA, as a gateway to the nation’s economy, is one of the leading agencies that address policies that government has signed in the international best practices in shipping.
“Port environment is a transit area, we don’t delay in the clearance of goods, trying to work on ship waiting time to avoid demurrage incured by ship agents and international principals that ship cargo to the port,” he said.
Adamu further said that the dream of the NPA is to ensure that Rivers port especially would serve as a hub to trans-shipment of cargo to dry port and the terminal operators are working assiduously to make sure that the ports are performing optimally.
He said that port expansion gave room for speedy handling of vessels and reduced delay for dumurrage, which helped to increase the revenue base during his tenure.
According to him, government has been supporting NPA to ensure that navigational channels are safe and secured, leading to increased patronage.
He said that issues of insecurity, like pirate attacks and miscreants around the port and water ways, had drastically reduced.
“We have a combined team of port police, NPA police and all the tools being provided by NPA, with the Rivers security architecture, which has aided in controlling insecurity,” Adamu said.
He urged the NPA workers to support the new manager to succeed.