A twitter user Nefertiti has said that, contrary to what is been publicized the Federal government, the Onitsha River Port is not fully functional, only barges and trucks can ferry goods into the river port for now.
A barge is a shoal-draft flat-bottomed boat, built mainly for river and canal transport to bulk goods from the ports to other destinations within a country.
Nefertiti who tweets using the name @firstladyship explained that a lot still needs to be done like dredging of the river before vessels from international shores can begin to come in.
She also faulted the administration of a President Muhammadu Buhari for commissioning a project which she said was already commissioned by the previous Government.
She said, “Just to put things in its proper perspective, Buhari cannot commission an already commissioned project.
“While I commend Buhari for the utilization of the Onitsha Clarion Terminal river port, the project was built & commissioned by Julius Berger under Jonathan, during the Peter Obi days as Governor of Anambra state, in August 2012.
“But that’s not the issue, the problem here is the ‘dredging’ of the River Niger, so you could have MAERSK Vessels directly from China berth at Onitsha, cutting off Lagos, Onne or Calabar seaports.
“So for now, we have major truck services from Onne Port to Onitsha Port. But we all know how bad roads in & around Onne Port are.
“River Niger must be ‘dredged’ before vessels can come in. Good development, considering the revenue shortfalls, but a lot still needs to be done.”
Another twitter user Adetutu Balogun decribed the administration of a Buhari as liars for posting the wrong information while celebrating its achievements.
According to her they are celebrating containers arriving the ports when what was shown in the pictures say contrary as the picture revealed a tug boat pulling a barge.
She explained that containers on a barge is a form of intermolecular freight transport where containers are stacked on a barge and towed to a destination on an inland waterway, which meant that it is not coming directly from and international location.
Buharists & Lying are like 5 & 6!— Adetutu Balogun, MBA (@Tutsy22) October 7, 2020
* Tweet 1 – He posted a picture that "containers arrive at Onitsha River port today".
Then l tweeted at him.
* Tweet 2 – He posted information of the containers, but departure = 10/10/2020 & arrival date = 02/12/2020.#BackToTheFuture 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/HDYjsQOTrL
Recall that the port was commissioned on Sunday by MD/CEO, National Inland Waterways Authority, NIWA, George Moghalu.
Some reactions from a cross section of other Nigerians below;
So Onitsha Port was commissioned yesterday & you can now send a container from China to Onitsha without going through Lagos? And some of you have been using it for months but kept quiet? Why do people refuse to talk when good things happen in Nigeria? Una dey fear una influencer? pic.twitter.com/BVVx2iUxpb— Dr. Joe Abah (@DrJoeAbah) October 7, 2020
Yes goods have been arriving Onitsha River Port by trucks before & after the lockdown. Customs escort the goods to Onitsha from Onne and inspections are done at Onitsha River Port. Julius Berger moves materials by barge through that Port. We will continue to advocate for better https://t.co/F3vLDcg15H— ijeoma Ezeasor (@EzeasorIje) October 7, 2020
So Onitsha onne port can now Receive goods in container from China without branching in Lagos first..— EMEKA OKOLI KINGSLEY (@Okoliemeka7) October 7, 2020
Good news for the Igbo nation and Business juggernauts🙌👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏 pic.twitter.com/vwf4DE9QKl
This is awesome. Onitsha Port changes a whole lot for Nnewi, Onitsha and Aba. Augmenting these with rail liberates goods movement in the east.— Emeka Azuka Okoye (@EmekaOkoye) October 7, 2020
It is time to build industrial parks all over and start an urban renewal programme. https://t.co/XrcnkN9VWC
The Onitsha Inland Port after 42 years is another plus to Buhari. This will help decongest Lagos State and Port Harcourt as well as our highways . There's a Second Niger Bridge coming, and the Eastern Railway about to be approved too. pic.twitter.com/0EIUhnwhLh— ᴏᴍᴀsᴏʀᴏ ᴀʟɪ ᴏᴠɪᴇ™☤ (@OvieAli) October 7, 2020
The news that Cargoes would henceforth berth at Onne and Onitsha ports is well received.— DEMAGOGUE PhD.💘senior advocat🎓 (@von_Bismack) October 7, 2020
We would further ask for an expansion of the Onitsha port so as to be able to carry the expected cargoes that would prefer to berth in the port due to its convenience and expediency.