For smooth and safe navigation, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), has commenced the cleanup of oil spills on the Onne Port Channel linking the Federal Oceans Terminal (FOT) Onne, River State.The Port Manager, Onne, Alhassan Ismaila Abubakar, who disclosed this at the weekend, said the project of water channel clean-up was the first of such to be executed by the Personnel of Environment Department of NPA from both the Corporate Headquarters and the FOT.
The Acting Port Manager, Mrs Barbara Ejemeh Nchey-Achukwu, who represented the Port Manager said there have been various complaints from terminal operators relating to oil pollution within the waters, and was therefore excited with the commencement of the water channel cleanup.
She said by this effort, the NPA is showing a duty of care, adding that after the cleanup exercise such complaints from operators would be a thing of the past.
General Manager HSE, I.S Abdulbaki, said they could not ascertain the actual cause of the oil spills at the Port, but suspected the activities of oil bunkers, and waste from communities that empty into the water channels. He said part of the activities ongoing is to remove debris from the waters, and use chemicals to clean the water to achieve improved quality.
He said the team would also embark on awareness campaign to raise the consciousness of the people on the need for clean waters, to sustain aquatic life and navigation.
Also, the Assistant General Manager, Environment Khadijat Sheidu-Shabi, said NPA s decided to carry out the oil spill cleanup to improve the quality of the Port water channels.“As an Authority, we are proud to show commitment to improving the navigational water channels within Onne Port,” she stated.
Principal Manager, and Coordinator on scene, and the Commander of Onne Port channel clean-up operations, Uchenna Chukwuemeka, said materials to be deployed for the exercise include Bio-degradable materials (PRP), Remediation Products (PRP), and Pressure washers for removal of oil stains on the quay walls and the fenders.He explained that the team would also be using scooping nets within the Onne water channels to remove floating debris, cans and seloteen bags within the Onne water channels.