The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved N6 347 967 644.21 for the provision of training logistics, operational equipment and maintenance support as part of the integrated national surveillance solution infrastructure and protection of waterways in Nigeria.
This was revealed by Transport Minister Rotimi Amaechi as he briefed State House correspondents at the end of the weekly FEC meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“This is also what we call the Deep Blue Project. This is the project that the president launched a few months ago, around May or June. The contract was awarded to N6 347 967 644.21 including 7.5% VAT for a period of two years.
“It is also important to say that the cabinet has been informed that there is a huge improvement in safety on our waterways now and we hope that this will continue as we move forward,” he said.
Just before the start of the FEC meeting, President Muhammadu Buhari invited members of the cabinet to wish his Chief of Staff Professor Ibrahim Agboola Gambari a happy 77th birthday celebration.
This followed the announcement to the FEC by the secretary of the government of the Federation, the boss Mustapha de Gambari, of the birthday.
President Buhari congratulated him on turning 77 and jokingly told him that “you are still going strong, congratulations! “
The ministers present sang in chorus of laughter and birthday greetings.
Professor Gambari joined the government as chief of staff twenty months ago following the death of the former incumbent, Abba Kyari.
Prior to that time, Professor Gambari had served as Minister of Foreign Affairs under the military government headed by Major General Muhammadu Buhari in the 1980s and subsequently served as Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations.
He then joined the United Nations system, reaching the post of Assistant Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Africa, serving as the joint representative of the African Union and the UN in some of the troubled countries of the world, including Angola, Darfur, Iraq and Myanmar.
Described as an accomplished scholar, Professor Gambari has taught at City University of New York, State University of New York in Albany, and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, and has been a visiting professor at the John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. in Baltimore, Maryland.
He is widely published in Nigerian and international scholarly journals and has written several books on Nigerian foreign policy.
Professor Gambari is the founder of the Savannah Center for Diplomacy, Democracy and Development, a non-governmental “think tank” based in Abuja.