Ahead of the Freeport concrete road pavement at the National Port Authority (NPA) by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the president of the National Customs Brokers Association of Liberia (NCBAL), Ivan F. Tumbey, has commended the port’s management for the ongoing rehabilitation work.
Tumbey, who spoke to journalists at a press conference in Monrovia recently, said the current modernization of the Freeport will improve and enhance cargo handling as well as reduce traffic at the port.
He emphasized that the work being implemented by the current NPA management headed by David Williams sends a message to the world that Liberia is determined to improve in transacting business.
“The modernization of Freeport of Monrovia is well on course with the construction of a rigid pavement, drainage, sidewalks, street lights (some as high as 60 meters), and parking lot within the facility and outside of the APM Terminals concession area about 65% complete,” Williams added.
Tumbey said when completed the improvement is expected to reduce congestion in the port ensuring the free movement of trucks and containers, as well as improve safety to personnel and address perennial flooding within the Freeport of Monrovia during the Rainy Season. He said the illumination will also be improved thereby improving overall security in the port.
“Since the 60’s when it was turned over to the government of Liberia, we have experienced, over the years, that the port looks like a highway and people ask port users whether they are from Sinoe or Maryland. But today, with the tireless work of Mr. Williams and his team, we can boast of a modernized port in our country,” Tumbey continued.
It may be recalled that the modernization of the Freeport of Monrovia is part of the Agenda for Transformation (AFT) of the seaport sector. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf visited the road project at the Freeport earlier to get a glimpse of the ongoing work, and expressed satisfaction with it.
“This is part of her vision for transforming the seaport sector into a modern port. The internal roads within the Freeport of Monrovia over three decades fell into a state of disrepair.
“We are calling on our business partners and stakeholders that we will continue to engage the management of the port, because we know the constraints we’re going through with this new development. We all know that nothing good comes easy, so we are asking every business partner to keep focus; by December 15 or 20 our port will be given back to us.” he said.
For his part, Mulbah B. Sumo, president of the Port Truckers Association, applauded Williams for this bold steps taken to transform the NPA.
Sumo then pledged his organization’s commitment to working with the NPA management team and to improve the business climate in the country.