…As NGO urges Gov. Ugwuanyi to implement OGP in Enugu***
Following a ghastly accident in which a co-join vehicle crushed three imported cars just leaving the port on Saturday, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) announced Sunday that it had hurriedly removed a container and the articulated vehicle involved in an accident from the First Gate of Tin-Can Island Port, Lagos.
The accident, according to eye witnesses was caused by the terrible state of the port’s access road, resulting in the articulated vehicle uncontrollably swaying, as it attempted to dodge some of the portholes which had developed overtime due to neglect, into manholes.
The NPA General Manager, Corporate and Strategic Communications, Mr. Adams Jatto indicated in Lagos on Sunday that it hurriedly cleared the scene and provided access to port users, so as to guarantee ease of doing business, thanking God that no life was lost.
He acknowledged that three imported cars were also affected in the incident, adding, however, that no casualty was recorded. He however refrained from highlighting who would bear the cost or loss of the three imported crushed cars.
“Our investigation showed that the accident happened when the truck driver was trying to manouvre his way and the container it was conveying rolled off and crashed on the already parked vehicles.
“While this incident is regrettable, the NPA as a responsible organisation has removed the container to provide access to port users.
“NPA assures her various customers and stakeholders of her continued responsibilities in ensuring that all necessary measures are taken in providing a secured and friendly environment for customer satisfaction and efficient service delivery,” Jatto said, saying the Authority regretted any inconvenience the accident might have caused the public, especially the port community; and assuring them of prompt response to issues “when they occur”.
In the meantime, an Enugu-based Non Governmental Organisation, the Divine Era Development and Social Rights Initiative on Sunday urged Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to start the implementation of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) in the state, stressing that it was long overdue.
The Executive Director of the group, Mrs Ogechukwu Enwelum stated this in Enugu, noting that the OGP, a global hub aimed at enthroning development and good governance in countries and states that signed up for it aims at positively changing the lives of people.
She said the OGP had four thematic areas which included fiscal transparency, anti-corruption, access to information and citizens’ engagement and empowerment.
She, however, said it was sad that the state government had not taken any other meaningful step for the implementation of the project apart from the inauguration of the steering committee.
“Beyond the inauguration of the steering committee, there should be a State Action Plan which is a blueprint on how to achieve what the government signed up for.
“Unfortunately, there is no such plan,” she said.
Enwelum, who is a member of the steering committee, said other states as well as the federal government that signed up for the OGP had come out with success stories.
She said the state government needed to show more commitments in improving the lives of residents of the state, adding that the implementation of the OGP was one sure way of doing that.
She said that the people expected Ugwuanyi to waste no time in putting the necessary machineries in place in order to implement it in his second term in office.
The executive director said that signing up for OGP was beyond inauguration of the steering committee.
“I am thinking that in this second tenure the state government will look at how to implement what it signed up for in order to change the lives of the people.
“OGP is working at the national level and we have seen many states that have come out with success stories about how they are implementing it.
“Enugu state is taking the lead in so many ways and we also want it to take the lead in the OGP.
“We expect the state to look inward and to leverage on its resources to implement it,” she said.
Enwelum said the state government would do well by involving its people in the process of governance.