By Muyiwa Lucas
Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Limited (Lekki Port), the developer of the Lekki Deep Sea Port under construction at the Lagos Free Zone, Ibeju-Lekki, has started the construction of the 680m long quay wall with the driving of the first pile.
According to the Chief Technical Officer, Lekki Port, Mr Steven Heukelom, the construction of the quay wall marks a major milestone from a technical perspective, as it is what will ensure that the port is capable of handling multiple container vessels of various sizes at the same time. Heukelom explained that during the Phase 1 of the project, the quay wall will be 680m long, with capacity to berth two vessels each of up to 18,000 Twenty feet Equivalent Units (TEUs). He further revealed that that there will be a total of 857 steel piles on the Combi wall.
The container terminal, he explained, would be equipped with seven Ship to Shore Cranes, 21 Rubber Tyre Gantry cranes and other modern rolling terminal equipment. The Combi Wall will have a diameter of 1.15m – 2.3m, a thickness of 23mm and between 28 – 41m deep.
The Chief Executive Officer of Lekki Port, Mr Ruogang Du, explained that the commencement of piling of quay wall is a major phase of the construction. This feat, he opined, symbolises a significant step towards the timely delivery of the project.
Du said despite the setback occasioned by the coronavirus pandemic, both the investors and the contractors have demonstrated admirable commitment to deliver the project as and when due, with construction now at full steam.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has harmed global economic development and personnel mobility everywhere. However, developers and investors in Lekki Port have not stopped moving forward. We are actively resuming construction and are striving to fulfil our commitment to officially open the port for operations in the first half of 2023. This is a commitment to Lagos state and a commitment to Nigeria, and we will do our best to achieve it,” he said.
In similar vein, the Board Chairman, Lekki Port, Mr Biodun Dabiri, lauded the invaluable roles played by the project promoters and stakeholders including Tolaram, China Harbour Engineering Company, Lagos State Government, host communities and the Federal Government, through the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).
He explained that the completion of the port would greatly assist in accommodating the rapid expansion of trade being witnessed across the West African region.
“I want to thank all our shareholders for all the support and energy you have put into this project. I keep saying that it is an iconic project. From all indications, we are building history here. Some of the piles we are doing today will last for more than 100 years. With all the support from everyone that is here, I believe the port will be safely delivered on time”, Dabiri added.