By Chukwunonso Nwobi, Lagos
As a Businessman, I first learnt about the the Dala inland dry port During the former Administration of Rabi’u Kwankwaso when the then Commissioner of commerce Nuhu Damburam offered me the project.
Although I was not opportuned to be the one to handle the project, but deep inside me,I know the Commercial city of Kano is getting back on track after decades of neglect.
Having Known Kano as a significant trading and commercial hub of not only Nigeria but to the west African Sub region, it is absolutely necessary to provide a permanent but sustainable alternative for the delivery of goods to a designated place like the ongoing Dala inland Dry port.
As a commercial nerve centre, Kano has been well known as the centre of commerce since the advent of Trans-Saharan trade that spanned the desert of North Africa down to the West African coastal region.
The location of Kano as an industrial hub makes the city, the commercial centre linking most parts of Northern Nigeria by air and land. The vast agricultural dams in the state support the growth of agricultural crops for both domestic and international markets.
Therefore, for obvious reasons, I must say the Kano inland dry port will among other things, help to decongest Lagos seaport and reduce the cost of importation for the people of Kano and Northern Nigeria in general, it will save lives since trucks will no longer need to travel to lagos to clear their goods as the Kaduna-Kano rail will serve the alternative.
Kano is now the largest populated state in Nigeria, which means It will also generate employment for the good people of Kano in addition to improving the internally generated revenue of both state and federal government.
By this, the glory of Kano as a hive of business activities will return because neighbouring states will now have to come to Kano to clear their goods as against going to Lagos while shipping services will be at the doorstep of consumers in Northern Nigeria.
Despite Nigeria’s economic problems, I must say this project is one of the most important economic calculations of the Federal government.
However, there are still many lapses to cover if this project is to come to reality; Federal Government must not deviate from the initial intention of the project. The Kano State government and all other relevant stakeholders must put heads together to ensure the completion of the project.
It is my belief that any wrong move or political interest can actually jeopardize this life changing economic investment.
Chukwunonso Nwobi is a Lagos based Businessman.