Port Delay Angers Lüderitz Mayor

THE mayor of Luumlderitz, Susan Ndjaleka, has launched an unprecedented attack on Namport for allegedly delaying port expansion plans, which are considered beneficial for the economic and infrastructure development of the southern coastal town.

Ndjaleka blamed alleged lack of participation and commitment by the Namport board for the expansion delays.

“Vested with the obligation of developing ports for the current and future developments, it is therefore, critically important that the board of Namport takes up this matter and avoid further delays. It is about time that plans for the second port development materialised,” Ndjaleka wrote in an open letter to The Namibian.

According to a feasibility study completed in 2011, of which The Namibian has seen a copy, the expansion plans were summarised as follow:

Phase1: Existing port without rail connectivity (Year 2010 to 2014). Maximise existing infrastructure with existing transportation links, provide container facilities in form of cold storage expanded containerreefer storage and handling as well as a container freight station accommodate short term solution for export of bagged manganese estimated at a throughput of up to 60 000 MTPA and maintain support to the current core industries, including zinc export, fishing industry and diamond mining operations.

Phase 2: Existing port with light rail linkage (Year 2014 to 2020)

The main differentiator and enabler for this phase is the commissioning of the existing light railway that is yet to be completed. The railway should also be extend to the new proposed alignment behind the port.

Phase 3: new bulk solid handling facilities with heavy haul rail linkage (Year 2020 onwards)

This phase is defined by the development of a new deepwater port at Angra point, which will be fed by a future heavy haul rail corridor from the Northern Cape (SA) producers. The new port makes provision for the development of large dry bulk terminals that include iron ore and manganese for the purpose of this study. However, the layouts developed are taking cognisance of the possibility of future commodities that could also be located at the new port, e.g a large coal terminal.

Ndjaleka also said that due to the high port rates, the survival of fishing companies, which happen to be the main employment creators at the town, “comes at the cost of an arm and a leg”.

At the time of going to the press, Luumlderitz Namport manager Max Witbooi failed to respond to questions on allegations that Namport is delaying the port expansion plans, which were emailed to him last Wednesday.

Source : The Namibian