By Innocent Orok
The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has taken trade facilitation a notch higher with the berthing at the Lekki Deep Seaport of the largest container carrier to sail on Nigerian territorial waters on Sunday 21st January, 2024.
The vessel measuring 367M in length over all christened “Maersk Edirne” has a Breadth of 48.2 and carried a Gross Registered Tonnage (GRT) of 142,131metric tonnes and a Dead weight Tonnage (DWT) of 147,340 metric tonnes, constituting 3,376 total cargo onboard was navigated to safety by the highly experienced and thoroughly equipped Pilots of the NPA.
This development validates the assurances given by the Managing Director / CEO Nigerian Ports Authority, Mr. Mohammed Bello Koko during the signing of the Presidential / Ministerial Performance Bond in December 2023, that “the Authority under my watch is poised to provide the leadership and technical guidance required to maximize the potentials inherent in our marine and blue economy”.
Responding to the milestone achievement on Sunday, Bello Koko commended the Honourable Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, His Excellency Adegboyega Oyetola for the consistent support and endorsement of the Authority’s initiatives and investments in employee upskilling and equipment renewal which made this milestone seamlessly achievable.
Before this time, the largest commercial vessels to sail on Nigerian waters were “MV Stadelhorn” and “MSC Maureen” at Onne Port and TinCan Island Port Complexes respectively. Thus the berthing of a ship of measuring 367 meters at Lekki Deep Seaport represents a quantum leap forward.
The Lekki Deep Seaport has by this feat in addition to its pioneering of full automation and facilitation of trans-hippment proven its readiness to exceed stakeholders’ expectations.