To ensure accident free ride and also to put passengers and boat operators on notice, the Lagos Zonal Office of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), has rolled out safety campaign across key operational jetties in Lagos.
Flagging off the campaign which is specifically designed to keep stakeholders alert on needs to comply with extant regulations on movement of persons and goods, Zonal Manager, Lagos National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Engineer Sarat Lara Braimah, led the safety mission, and told passengers and operators to make use of life jackets and avoid situations that may put boats at risk.
The well coordinated safety campaign took off at the popular CMS jetty, where, Engineer Sarat Braimah, patiently addressed passengers on the importance of using life jackets and instructed boat operators not to board any intending water transportation user who failed or refused to wear life jackets.
“This campaign operation is targeted at zero tolerance for unbecoming attitudes inimical to safety issues on Lagos waters and everyone who may wish to use the Waterways must embrace it. Life is important and NIWA in Lagos, would not stand by and watch stakeholders take to flagrant disobedience to safety matters”, she explained.
The Lagos Zonal boss noted that the campaign will cover Ikorodu, Badore, Epe, Liverpool, Badagry and Ajegunle waterfront jetties, all in Lagos throughout the festive season not excluding January 2020 and would be reviewed to stem any unwholesome activities and presence among users of water transportation in Lagos.
Engineer Sarat Braimah, added that the campaign will be rolled out in phases and “we intend to also introduce patrol strategies as a backup to this one to one reach out. We expect feedback from the stakeholders on any potential challenge that may create anxieties particularly to smooth operation of boat services and any life threatening practices among boat operators.”
The Lagos Zonal Office is also targeting students and pupils from riverine communities for a special “must use” compliance of life jackets as part of the ember months campaign and a new safety measures to encourage use of water transportation in Lagos.
She concluded that NIWA Lagos, would also impound boats and life jackets which did not meet with certain operational specifications.