Port authorities across the West and Central African region have expressed worry about encroachment upon their lands, which negatively affects expansion.
Director-General of the Ghana Ports and Harbour Authority (GPHA), Michael Luguje, made this known on Thursday in Accra, at the closing ceremony of the 39th Council and Conference of Ports Management Association.
The conference brought together port authorities from Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, among others, to deliberate on ways to improve the management of ports in the sub-region.
Mr. Luguje stressed the need for all port authorities in the region to make long-term plans to enable them meet land requirements in future in the event of the expansion of their operations.
The participants also appealed to ports authorities to review their land documents to prevent land litigations.
He stated that port expansion in future must be backed by expert research and proper planning.
Mr Luguje said, “Challenges have come up, suggestions have come up, solutions have been proffered. Now it is up to us to go back home and work hard in making our ports as efficient as possible. We have an enormous task ahead but I also believe in our collective effort to surmount these challenges.”
Minister of Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, reiterated the commitment of government to implementing the first port rule to bring an end to the diversion of goods that are transported to Sahelian countries (Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger).
During the sessions, the organization leaders discussed topics such as Efficient Planning, Development, Management and Regulation of the Ports’ Lands.
The meetings helped them realize challenges that should be addressed.