Claim: First International vessel lands at the port of Harper, Maryland County since the end of Liberia’s civil conflict.
The Varkan Ege is NOT the first International Vessel at the port of Harper in 31 years
Full Text: On November 10, the Public Relations Director of the National Port Authority (NPA) Malcolm Scott took to his Facebook page with a post that a Giant size Vessel, Varkan Ege- nearing 100 meters long with 35488 SDW and Gross tonnage of 2222 has berthed at the Port of Harper in wake of massive infrastructure development in that Southern port.
He claimed that this is the first of its kind in more than three decades(31) years – Since the end of Liberia’s civil war( 1990).
“The berthing of Varkan Ege signals a leap steep to brand new developments of the port operation and the purpose for which it was originally built.”
He said, “This is in line with the government’s vision to refurbish and operationalize the Ports to ensure super economic activities throughout the country.”
The National Port Authority (NPA) was established by an Act of the National Legislature in 1967 and amended in 1970 as a state-owned corporation to manage, plan, and build all public ports in Liberia. The NPA system has four ports: Freeport of Monrovia, Port of Buchanan, Port of Greenville, and Port of Harper. The Freeport of Monrovia is the largest and the main Port within the Authority’s network.
The post attracted 35 comments and 13 shares.
One social media user Emmanuel Dillon wrote: “Small bro Malcolm, please research and change the years. For a little info, I was reassigned to the Free Port of Monrovia 2003 from the Port of Harper, and while there we received a minimum of three international vessels every month. Correct this, please don’t let others take u for a joker. And mind you, they continue to come after I left not until MODEL (the rebel group) captured Harper that they stopped.”
Verification: The Stage Media contacted Matilda Parker, NPA’s Former Director, she disclosed a 2010/11 report that shows vessels traffic and cargo traffic at the port of Harper.
The report shows that at Harper 49 vessels entered and were cleared, also Summer Deadweight was 69,856.
For the cargo traffic, Harper port recorded 2,770.1 cargo, 617.4-export in 2010 while in 2011 its import was 10,298 and export -1,878.8 that sum up to 15,564.3.
Journalist Bryan Dioh previously posted on his page “#stilljournalistwithoutbounder# First International Vessel anchor on Harper Sea Port after the 1990 post-war. Details coming up in several News outlets..”
But a user George Tò Blede Davis wrote: “1990? So the vessels that were carrying timbers during Taylor’s regime were not International Vessels?
Phoenix 102.7 reporter Bryan later posted to clarify;“ #stilljournalistwithoutbounder# Haven investigated issues surrounding the international Vessel which anchor today at the Harper port, it is clear from all indications that this is not the first Vessel that anchor since after the 1990 war.. Thanks to all those who provided the necessary information and special thanks to most of our old folks for the historical analysis provided during my background investigation..”
At the same time, the NPA website shows that the Port of Harper has increased to 11 vessels that amounting to 33%.
Otis Brown, ex-employee of the port disclosed that during the Charles Taylor regime the (TTCO)Togba Timber Cooperation and (MWPI)Maryland Workers Processing Incorporation had vessels coming from the International waters exporting logs and Oil respectively.
According to him, these companies operated before the 2003- MODEL War.
The 2003 war ended brought to an end international vessels anchoring at the Harper Port.
Conclusion: False, the Varkan Ege is NOT the first International Vessel at the port of Harper in 31 years.
It is right to say after the 2003 war, the Varkan Ege is Not the first international vessel to anchor at the port of Harper.
It has been 18 years instead of 31 years as stated by NPA’s Public Relations Director Malcolm Scott.