The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has said private sector operators should desist from blaming the government for inefficiencies in the transport sector.
He said the private sector operators were responsible for failure in the maritime industry as well as the aviation sector with the government performing only a regulatory role.
The minister made the position known at the Government Meets Business forum of the Institute of Directors in Lagos. He said, “For a very long time, the government has always encouraged the private sector to partner the government. How far have we succeeded from the point when we privatised the aviation and maritime sectors?
“Presently, the government is coming back to take over the airlines through the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria. You say we are a failure, but the private sector has not done well like they need to.”
He also spoke on the rehabilitation of the Apapa port road, saying its delay was due to the indecisiveness over the ministry that should fix the road, adding that the Nigerian Ports Authority had been directed to award the contract.
Amaechi promised to intervene in fast-tracking its rehabilitation.
The minister also said the government had awarded waterways security contract worth $186m, as part of its efforts to ensure security of lives along Nigeria’s territorial waters.
He said, “The Federal Government has approved a new security infrastructure for NIMASA to fight criminals on the waterways. It took one year; there was due process and it was finally approved. The process of awarding the contract started around January 2016.”
The Director-General, NIMASA, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, pointed out that inconsistent government policy was discouraging investors in the transport sector.