Governor of Edo State, Mr Godwin Obaseki, has said that the Nigerian Navy has provided tremendous backing for the actualisation of the Gelegele Seaport project in the state, as its men are providing support to its foreign partners, China Harbour Engineering Company Limited (CHEC), who are currently conducting feasibility study for the project.
Obaseki also thanked the Navy for its swift response to security challenges, especially in the coastal areas of the state, noting that these gestures have endeared the Navy to the people of the state.
Governor Obaseki said these in his remarks at the closing ceremony of the Nigerian Navy Retreat 2018, themed “Optimising Operational Availability of NN fleet” held from February 18 to 20, at the Nigerian Naval Engineering College, Ogorode, Sapele, Delta State.
According to the governor, “We thank the Nigerian Navy for the continuous support we have received from your men, especially the response squad in the Niger Delta. As you are aware, we are working with some foreign investors who will be building a port at the confluence of the Benin and Ovia Rivers. Your men have provided support and security to these investors as they conduct feasibility study of the project.”
He hailed the Navy for the foresight in organising the retreat, as it affords policymakers a platform to debate and offer solutions to issues and challenges bedevilling the Navy, noting, “I am impressed to find that this retreat is an assemblage of policymakers and other officers to brainstorm on the challenges they face. I must say that the quality of thought has left me bewildered. The Navy is seeking solutions and this kind of reflections are an indication of an organisation that wants to move forward.”
In his remarks, the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ebok Ibas, expressed appreciation to Governor Obaseki for his unflinching support for the Nigerian Navy, noting that the Navy’s exploits are fueled by the support it enjoys.
He disclosed that the Nigerian Navy’s improved presence at sea and in backwaters has improved security, forced criminal elements to relocate to other regions of the Gulf of Guinea and safeguarded Nigeria’s territorial waters.
According to him, “The Nigerian Navy has adopted innovative strategies to optimise the availability of its fleet for operation. This has not only led to improved security but also in the deployment of its deterrence and surveillance abilities.”