Ghanaian News

GPHA commissions two new tugboats named after past director-generals

The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) has commissioned two new tugboats in honour of two of its past director-generals.

The tugboats were named after GP Captain Edward Alexander A. Awuviri (Rtd) and Nester Percy Galley, who served between 1986 and 1988 and between 2009 and 2012 respectively.

The 80T Bollard Pu and Azimuth Stern Drive (ASD) high-performance tugboats, would help in the provision of special duties including towing, berthing and unberthing, salvage, pushing, assisting and escorting, firefighting, and environmental services.

Michael Luguje, the director general of the GPHA, said in his welcome address that the tugboat, which is the biggest in the sub-region, has the capacity to handle the biggest vessels of contemporary times.

Luguje commended the government and stakeholders for their unflinching support for the maritime and port sectors and the provision of resources for GPHA to procure the tugboats.

He said the port expansion programme had enabled the GPHA to develop the Tema and Takoradi ports, positioning them as the leading container port in West Africa, with Tema and Takoradi leading in dry bulk cargoes, adding that they were progressing towards becoming the leading port in West and Central Africa, and hopefully in Africa at large.

He added that due to the manpower expertise and available equipment, Ghana’s seaports were receiving the largest number of container vessels and dry bulk vessels.

Alhassan Tampuli, the deputy minister for Transport, delivering the keynote address, said the government was committed to a safe and efficient maritime and port sector.
It is in this direction that the government is coming out with policies such as digitalization of port operations to ensure the efficiency of port work.

Tampuli said the government’s commitment was also clear in the significant investment in infrastructure and service improvement across the country’s ports.

He indicated that for Ghana to compete favourably in the maritime domain, infrastructure and modern equipment could not be compromised; therefore, the Government would continue to come up with policies and structures to improve infrastructure and service delivery.

“It is important that GPHA continue to hold firm international best practices in maritime safety and technical operation, and by so doing, we can provide safe, reliable, and efficient services not only in Ghana but also take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area that has commenced in earnest,” he stated.

He expressed satisfaction with the efforts of the board and management as far as industrial harmony was concerned, saying it would enable Ghana to meet the growing demand of the maritime industry and strengthen its position as the leading port in the sub-region.

He urged stakeholders in the maritime sector to look to the future with optimism, determination, and confidence that the inauguration of the tugboats along with the port expansion would ensure increased efficiency, enhanced safety, and growth in vessel calls.

He congratulated the former director generals, noting that the naming of the tugboats after them was to immortalise their memories and their contributions to the development of the sector.

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